The effect of regional social capital and external knowledge acquisition on process and product innovation
To introduce new products and processes, firms often need to acquire knowledge developed in other firms and organizations. Drawing on social capital and transaction cost theory, we argue that not only is the success of such acquisitions for the development of product and product innovations dependent on strategic and economic variables, it may also be contingent on the social capital available in the geographical area in which the firm is located. Combining data on social capital at the level of 21 regions with a large scale data set on innovative activities by a representative sample of 2464 Italian manufacturing firms, we find that — after controlling for a large set of firm characteristics and regional variables — being located in regions characterized by high level of social interaction leads to a higher propensity to innovate. Moreover, being located in an area characterized by a high degree of social interaction positively moderates the effectiveness of externally acquired R&D on innovation inclination. Key words: social capital; external acquisition; process innovation; product innovation.
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|Date of revision:||12 Jun 2008|
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