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Learning, internal research, and spillovers

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  • James Adams

Abstract

This paper presents new evidence on the practice of industrial Research and Development (R&D), especially its allocation between learning and internal research, and the role of outside knowledge in reshaping this allocation. The evidence describes the sources of outside knowledge, portrays the flow of that knowledge into firms, and interprets the channels by which outside knowledge influences R&D. In this way, the paper illustrates R&D's value in dealing with disequilibria. The empirical work is based on a sample of 220 R&D laboratories owned by 115 firms in the US chemical, machinery, electrical equipment, and motor vehicle industries. The findings are consistent with the view that universities and firms generate technological opportunities in R&D laboratories. In addition to partnerships that define rather strict channels of opportunity, the paper uncovers broader effects of R&D spillovers. The results also suggest that academic spillovers drive learning about universities and that industrial spillovers drive learning about industries. Thus, externally derived opportunities reshape the rate and direction of R&D. Overall the findings paint an image of practitioners of industrial R&D reaching aggressively for opportunities rather than waiting for opportunities to come to them.

Suggested Citation

  • James Adams, 2006. "Learning, internal research, and spillovers," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(1), pages 5-36.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:ecinnt:v:15:y:2006:i:1:p:5-36
    DOI: 10.1080/1043859042000332178
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    Cited by:

    1. Stephan, Paula E., 2010. "The Economics of Science," Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, in: Bronwyn H. Hall & Nathan Rosenberg (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 0, pages 217-273, Elsevier.
    2. Cristiano Antonelli, 2017. "The derived demand for knowledge," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(1-2), pages 183-194, February.
    3. Cristiano Antonelli & Alessandra Colombelli, 2017. "The locus of knowledge externalities and the cost of knowledge," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 51(8), pages 1151-1164, August.
    4. Antonelli, Cristiano & David, Paul, 2015. "The Useful Application of Knowledge: An Introduction," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis LEI & BRICK - Laboratory of Economics of Innovation "Franco Momigliano", Bureau of Research in Innovation, Complexity and Knowledge, Collegio 201510, University of Turin.
    5. Galdeano-Gómez, Emilio & Céspedes-Lorente, José, 2008. "Environmental spillover effects on firm productivity and efficiency: An analysis of agri-food business in Southeast Spain," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 131-139, August.
    6. Hans Lööf & Anders Broström, 2008. "Does knowledge diffusion between university and industry increase innovativeness?," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 33(1), pages 73-90, February.
    7. William H. Greene & David A. Hensher, 2008. "Modeling Ordered Choices: A Primer and Recent Developments," Working Papers 08-26, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
    8. Irina Balteanu & Aitor Erce, 2018. "Linking Bank Crises and Sovereign Defaults: Evidence from Emerging Markets," IMF Economic Review, Palgrave Macmillan;International Monetary Fund, vol. 66(4), pages 617-664, December.
    9. Muscio, Alessandro & Nardone, Gianluca & Stasi, Antonio, 2012. "Perceived Technological Regimes: An Empirical Analysis of the Apulian Wine Industry," 2012 International European Forum, February 13-17, 2012, Innsbruck-Igls, Austria 144969, International European Forum on System Dynamics and Innovation in Food Networks.
    10. Schmidt, Tobias & Sofka, Wolfgang, 2009. "Knowledge sourcing: legitimacy deficits for MNC subsidiaries?," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2009,09, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    11. Cristiano Antonelli & Francesco Crespi & Giuseppe Scellato, 2018. "Productivity growth persistence: firm strategies, size and system properties," Chapters, in: The Evolutionary Complexity of Endogenous Innovation, chapter 8, pages 176-202, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    12. Aurora A.C. Teixeira & José Sequeira, 2009. "Determinants of the international influence of a R&D organisation: a bibliometric approach," UITT Working Papers 2009-03-wp3, INESC Porto, Unidade de Inovação e Transferência de Tecnologia(UITT).
    13. Anders Broström, 2012. "Firms’ rationales for interaction with research universities and the principles for public co-funding," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 37(3), pages 313-329, June.
    14. Cristiano Antonelli & Francesco Crespi & Christian A. Mongeau Ospina & Giuseppe Scellato, 2017. "Knowledge composition, Jacobs externalities and innovation performance in European regions," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 51(11), pages 1708-1720, November.
    15. Edler, Jakob & Fier, Heide & Grimpe, Christoph, 2011. "International scientist mobility and the locus of knowledge and technology transfer," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 791-805, July.
    16. Tobias Schmidt & Wolfgang Sofka, 2005. "Lost in Translation - Empirical Evidence for Liability of Foreignness as Barriers to Knowledge Spillovers," Industrial Organization 0512012, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    17. Dennis Patrick Leyden, 2016. "Universities as partners in research joint ventures," Economia e Politica Industriale: Journal of Industrial and Business Economics, Springer;Associazione Amici di Economia e Politica Industriale, vol. 43(4), pages 449-462, December.
    18. Cohen, Wesley M., 2010. "Fifty Years of Empirical Studies of Innovative Activity and Performance," Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, in: Bronwyn H. Hall & Nathan Rosenberg (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 0, pages 129-213, Elsevier.

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