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Knowledge Structures

  • Moritz Müller
  • Robin COWAN
  • Geert Duysters
  • Nicolas JONARD

This paper investigates how technological distance between firms affects their network of R&D alliances. Our theoretic model assumes that the benefit of an alliance between two firms is given by their technological distance. This benefit-distance relationship determines the ego-network of each firm as well as the overall network structure. Empirical relevance is confirmed for the bio-pharmaceutical industry. Although we find that the network structure is largely explained by firm size, technological distance determines the positioning of firms in the network.

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Paper provided by Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg in its series Working Papers of BETA with number 2009-24.

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Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ulp:sbbeta:2009-24
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  1. Nooteboom, B. & Vanheverbeke, W.P.M. & Duysters, G.M. & Gilsing, V.A. & Oord van den, A,J,, 2005. "Optimal cognitive distance and absorptive capacity," Working Papers 05.05, Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies.
  2. Gilsing, Victor & Nooteboom, Bart & Vanhaverbeke, Wim & Duysters, Geert & van den Oord, Ad, 2008. "Network embeddedness and the exploration of novel technologies: Technological distance, betweenness centrality and density," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(10), pages 1717-1731, December.
  3. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521848053 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. Gubert, Flore & Fafchamps, Marcel, 2007. "Risk Sharing and Network Formation," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/10840, Paris Dauphine University.
  5. Soete, Luc, 1987. "The impact of technological innovation on international trade patterns: The evidence reconsidered," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 16(2-4), pages 101-130, August.
  6. Hunter, David R. & Goodreau, Steven M. & Handcock, Mark S., 2008. "Goodness of Fit of Social Network Models," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 103, pages 248-258, March.
  7. Cowan, Robin & Jonard, Nicolas, 2004. "Network structure and the diffusion of knowledge," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 28(8), pages 1557-1575, June.
  8. 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.
  9. Julien Pénin, 2003. "Patents versus ex-post rewards: a new look," Working Papers of BETA 2003-09, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.
  10. Mowery, David C. & Oxley, Joanne E. & Silverman, Brian S., 1998. "Technological overlap and interfirm cooperation: implications for the resource-based view of the firm," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(5), pages 507-523, September.
  11. Matthew O. Jackson, 2003. "A survey of models of network formation: Stability and efficiency," Working Papers 1161, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  12. Iain Cockburn & Rebecca Henderson & Scott Stern, 1999. "The Diffusion of Science-Driven Drug Discovery: Organizational Change in Pharmaceutical Research," NBER Working Papers 7359, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Robert P. Gilles & Cathleen Johnson, 2000. "original papers : Spatial social networks," Review of Economic Design, Springer, vol. 5(3), pages 273-299.
  14. Cockburn, Iain M & Henderson, Rebecca M, 1998. "Absorptive Capacity, Coauthoring Behavior, and the Organization of Research in Drug Discovery," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(2), pages 157-82, June.
  15. Orsenigo, L. & Pammolli, F. & Riccaboni, Massimo, 2001. "Technological change and network dynamics: Lessons from the pharmaceutical industry," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 485-508, March.
  16. Arundel, Anthony & Kabla, Isabelle, 1998. "What percentage of innovations are patented? empirical estimates for European firms," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 127-141, June.
  17. Patel, Pari & Pavitt, Keith, 1987. "Is Western Europe losing the technological race?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 16(2-4), pages 59-85, August.
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