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Technological Convergence in the IT Industry: The Role of Strategic Technology Alliances and Technological Competencies


  • Geert Duysters
  • John Hagedoorn


For some time now, the convergence of the telecommunications and computer industries into a single 'information and entertainment' industry has been predicted. The acquisitions that appeared to be bringing such a convergence about have not, however, proved particularly successful. The paper suggests that one factor behind the relatively low degree of convergence may be inertia. Following evolutionary and ecological theory, the paper argues that both external and internal inertial forces reduce the ability of firms to deal with changes in their technological cores. The paper concludes that technological convergence, although apparent on the technological and product/market level, does not seem to have affected the 'core' competencies of major IT companies.

Suggested Citation

  • Geert Duysters & John Hagedoorn, 1998. "Technological Convergence in the IT Industry: The Role of Strategic Technology Alliances and Technological Competencies," International Journal of the Economics of Business, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(3), pages 355-368.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:ijecbs:v:5:y:1998:i:3:p:355-368 DOI: 10.1080/13571519884431

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. repec:fth:harver:1473 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Cohen, Wesley M. & Levin, Richard C., 1989. "Empirical studies of innovation and market structure," Handbook of Industrial Organization,in: R. Schmalensee & R. Willig (ed.), Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 18, pages 1059-1107 Elsevier.
    3. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Patent Statistics as Economic Indicators: A Survey," NBER Chapters,in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 287-343 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Duysters, Geert & Hagedoorn, John, 1996. "Internationalization of corporate technology through strategic partnering: an empirical investigation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 1-12, January.
    5. Dosi, Giovanni, 1988. "Sources, Procedures, and Microeconomic Effects of Innovation," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 26(3), pages 1120-1171, September.
    6. Acs, Zoltan J & Audretsch, David B, 1989. "Patents as a Measure of Innovative Activity," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 171-180.
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    1. repec:eee:tefoso:v:122:y:2017:i:c:p:12-23 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. repec:wsi:ijitmx:v:14:y:2017:i:06:n:s0219877017500390 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Duysters, Geert & Lemmens, Charmianne & Letterie, Wilko & Vanhaverbeke, Wim, 2008. "The Innovative Performance of Alliance Block Members: Evidence from the Microelectronics Industry," MERIT Working Papers 064, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    4. Su, Hsin-Ning, 2017. "Collaborative and Legal Dynamics of International R&D- Evolving Patterns in East Asia," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 117(C), pages 217-227.
    5. Olivier Mortehan & Bruno Van Pottelsberghe, 2005. "Collaborative agreements and R&D intensity," Working Papers CEB 05-007.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    6. Geum, Youngjung & Kim, Moon-Soo & Lee, Sungjoo, 2016. "How industrial convergence happens: A taxonomical approach based on empirical evidences," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 112-120.
    7. Duysters, Geert & Lemmens, Charmianne, 2008. "Alliance block composition patterns in the microelectronics industry," MERIT Working Papers 060, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    8. Bruce A. Heiman & Jack A. Nickerson, 2004. "Empirical evidence regarding the tension between knowledge sharing and knowledge expropriation in collaborations," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(6-7), pages 401-420.
    9. van Dijk, Theon & Duysters, Geert, 1998. "Passing the European Patent Office: evidence from the data-processing industry," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(9), pages 937-946, December.
    10. repec:wsi:ijitmx:v:14:y:2017:i:01:n:s0219877017400041 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Hagedoorn, John & Duysters, Geert, 2000. "Learning in Dynamic Inter-firm Networks - The Efficacy of Multiple Contacts," Research Memorandum 009, Maastricht University, Maastricht Economic Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    12. repec:gam:jsusta:v:9:y:2017:i:4:p:541-:d:94915 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. repec:spr:scient:v:80:y:2009:i:3:d:10.1007_s11192-009-2158-4 is not listed on IDEAS

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    Technology; Convergence; Alliances; Competencies;


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