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Heterogeneous Combinations of Knowledge Elements: How the Knowledge Base Structure Impacts Knowledge-related Outcomes of a Firm

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  • Yoichi Matsumoto

    (Research Institute for Economics & Business Administration (RIEB), Kobe University, Japan)

Abstract

Knowledge is the preeminent resource of a firm. Although many scholars have focused on the firm's knowledge base, few studies have examined the effects of the knowledge base structure—how knowledge elements are linked or separated from each other in clusters—on firm's knowledge-related outcomes. This study examines the knowledge base structure, and tests hypotheses about the effects of heterogeneous combinations of knowledge elements on the outcomes. Through an analysis of the patents related to LCD technology, (1) the usefulness of an organization's inventions correlates positively with the density of the knowledge links between technologically different knowledge components, (2) the average usefulness of a firm's inventions correlates positively with the density of the knowledge links between technologically disparate knowledge components, (3) the number of inventions correlates negatively with the density of the knowledge links between excessively disparate knowledge components.

Suggested Citation

  • Yoichi Matsumoto, 2013. "Heterogeneous Combinations of Knowledge Elements: How the Knowledge Base Structure Impacts Knowledge-related Outcomes of a Firm," Discussion Paper Series DP2013-15, Research Institute for Economics & Business Administration, Kobe University.
  • Handle: RePEc:kob:dpaper:dp2013-15
    as

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    File URL: http://www.rieb.kobe-u.ac.jp/academic/ra/dp/English/DP2013-15.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2013
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Griliches, Zvi, 1990. "Patent Statistics as Economic Indicators: A Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 1661-1707.
    4. Herbert A. Simon, 1996. "The Sciences of the Artificial, 3rd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262691914, January.
    5. Fleming, Lee & Sorenson, Olav, 2001. "Technology as a complex adaptive system: evidence from patent data," Research Policy, Elsevier, pages 1019-1039.
    6. 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.
    7. Lee Fleming, 2001. "Recombinant Uncertainty in Technological Search," Management Science, INFORMS, pages 117-132.
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