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Complementarity in the innovation strategy: Internal R&D, external technology acquisition, and cooperation in R&D

  • Cassiman, Bruno

    ()

    (IESE Business School)

  • Veugelers, Reinhilde

    (IESE Business School)

Successful innovation depends on the development and integration of new knowledge in the innovation process. In order to successfully innovate, the firm will combine different innovation activities. In addition to doing own research and development, firms typically are engaged in the acquisition of knowledge on the technology market and cooperate actively in R&D with other firms and research organizations. In this paper we show that there exist important complementarities between the different innovation activities. We test complementarity between the innovation activities both directly, through the productivity approach, and indirectly, through the adoption approach. Using data from the Community Innovation Survey on Belgian manufacturing firms, we show that firms that are only engaged in a single innovation strategy, either internal R&D activities or sourcing technology externally, introduced fewer new and substantially improved products compared to firms which combine internal and external sourcing. This result is consistent with complementarity between own R&D and external technology sourcing activities. In the adoption approach we show that the different innovation activities are strongly positively correlated and identify common drivers, resulting in the perceived complementarity between these innovation activities. An important finding is that a more basic R&D base which may serve as an absorptive capacity and a capacity to strategically protect intellectual property are important common drivers for the different innovation activities

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Paper provided by IESE Business School in its series IESE Research Papers with number D/457.

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Length: 23 pages
Date of creation: 01 Jan 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ebg:iesewp:d-0457
Contact details of provider: Postal: IESE Business School, Av Pearson 21, 08034 Barcelona, SPAIN
Web page: http://www.iese.edu/

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  1. Miravete, Eugenio J & Pernías, Jose C, 2004. "Innovation Complimentarity and Scale of Production," CEPR Discussion Papers 4483, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Ichniowski, Casey & Shaw, Kathryn & Prennushi, Giovanna, 1997. "The Effects of Human Resource Management Practices on Productivity: A Study of Steel Finishing Lines," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 291-313, June.
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  4. Arora, Ashish & Gambardella, Alfonso, 1990. "Complementarity and External Linkages: The Strategies of the Large Firms in Biotechnology," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(4), pages 361-79, June.
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  8. Veugelers, Reinhilde & Cassiman, Bruno, 1999. "Make and buy in innovation strategies: evidence from Belgian manufacturing firms," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 63-80, January.
  9. Gourieroux, Christian & Monfort, Alain & Renault, Eric & Trognon, Alain, 1987. "Generalised residuals," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1-2), pages 5-32.
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  11. Veugelers, Reinhilde, 1997. "Internal R & D expenditures and external technology sourcing," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 303-315, October.
  12. Bruno Cassiman & Reinhilde Veugelers, 2002. "R&D Cooperation and Spillovers: Some Empirical Evidence from Belgium," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(4), pages 1169-1184, September.
  13. Milgrom, Paul & Roberts, John, 1990. "The Economics of Modern Manufacturing: Technology, Strategy, and Organization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 511-28, June.
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  16. Susan Athey & Scott Stern, 1998. "An Empirical Framework for Testing Theories About Complimentarity in Organizational Design," NBER Working Papers 6600, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Oxley, Joanne E, 1997. "Appropriability Hazards and Governance in Strategic Alliances: A Transaction Cost Approach," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 13(2), pages 387-409, October.
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