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Complexity and Innovation: Social Interactions and Firm Level Total Factor Productivity

The analysis of social interactions as drivers of economic dynamics represents a growing field of the economics of complexity. Social interactions are a specific form of interdependence whereby the changes in the behavior of other agents affect the structure of the utility functions for households and of the production functions for producers. In this paper, we apply the general concept of social interactions to the area of the economics of innovation and technological change. In particular, we discuss how both the knowledge spillovers literature and the Schumpeterian notion of creative reaction can be reconciled within a general framework building on the concept of social interactions within complex dynamics. The paper presents an empirical analysis of firm level total factor productivity (TFP) for a sample of 7020 Italian manufacturing companies observed during years 1996-2005. We show that changes in firm level TFP are significantly affected by localised social interactions. Such evidence is robust to the introduction of appropriate regional and sectoral controls, as well as to econometric specifications accounting for potential endogeneity problems. Moreover, we find evidence suggesting that changes in competitive pressure, namely the creative reaction channel, significantly affect firm level TFP with and additive effect with respect to localised social interactions deriving from knowledge spillovers.

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File URL: http://www.unito.it/unitoWAR/ShowBinary/FSRepo/D031/Allegati/WP2007Dip_L&B/9_WP_Momigliano.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Turin in its series Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis LEI & BRICK - Laboratory of Economics of Innovation "Franco Momigliano", Bureau of Research in Innovation, Complexity and Knowledge, Collegio Carlo Alberto. WP series with number 200709.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:uto:labeco:200709
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  1. Aghion, P. & Howitt, P., 1989. "A Model Of Growth Through Creative Destruction," Working papers 527, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  2. Emmanuel Duguet, 2006. "Innovation height, spillovers and tfp growth at the firm level: Evidence from French manufacturing," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(4-5), pages 415-442.
  3. Stefano Breschi & Francesco Lissoni, 2001. "Knowledge spillovers and local innovation systems: a critical survey," LIUC Papers in Economics 84, Cattaneo University (LIUC).
  4. Durlauf,S.N., 2003. "Complexity and emperical economics," Working papers 2, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  5. Becker, Gary S, 1991. "A Note on Restaurant Pricing and Other Examples of Social Influences on Price," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(5), pages 1109-16, October.
  6. Malerba, Franco, 1992. "Learning by Firms and Incremental Technical Change," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 102(413), pages 845-59, July.
  7. Edward L. Glaeser & Bruce Sacerdote & Jose A. Scheinkman, 1995. "Crime and Social Interactions," NBER Working Papers 5026, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Edward L. Glaeser & Jose A. Scheinkman, 2001. "Non-Market Interactions," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1914, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  9. von Hippel, Eric, 1976. "The dominant role of users in the scientific instrument innovation process," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 5(3), pages 212-239, July.
  10. Mario Calderini & Giuseppe Scellato, 2005. "Academic research, technological specialization and the innovation performance in European regions: an empirical analysis in the wireless sector," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(2), pages 279-305, April.
  11. Audretsch, David B & Feldman, Maryann P, 1996. "R&D Spillovers and the Geography of Innovation and Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 630-40, June.
  12. Antonelli, Cristiano, 2004. "The System Dynamics of Collective Knowledge: from Gradualism and Saltationism to Punctuated Change," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis LEI & BRICK - Laboratory of Economics of Innovation "Franco Momigliano", Bureau of Research in Innovation, Complexity and Knowledge, Collegio 200404, University of Turin.
  13. Schumpeter, Joseph A., 1947. "The Creative Response in Economic History," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(02), pages 149-159, November.
  14. Dasgupta, Partha & Stiglitz, Joseph, 1980. "Industrial Structure and the Nature of Innovative Activity," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 90(358), pages 266-93, June.
  15. Griliches, Zvi, 1990. "Patent Statistics as Economic Indicators: A Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 28(4), pages 1661-1707, December.
  16. Adam B. Jaffe, 1986. "Technological Opportunity and Spillovers of R&D: Evidence from Firms' Patents, Profits and Market Value," NBER Working Papers 1815, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Horst Hanusch & Andreas Pyka, 2007. "Principles of Neo-Schumpeterian Economics," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 31(2), pages 275-289, March.
  18. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth Through Creative Destruction," Scholarly Articles 12490578, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  19. Luigi Guiso & Fabiano Schivardi, 2007. "Spillovers in Industrial Districts," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(516), pages 68-93, 01.
  20. Kenneth Arrow, 1962. "Economic Welfare and the Allocation of Resources for Invention," NBER Chapters, in: The Rate and Direction of Inventive Activity: Economic and Social Factors, pages 609-626 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Federico Cingano & Fabiano Schivardi, 2003. "Identifying the Sources of Local Productivity Growth," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 474, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  22. repec:fth:harver:1473 is not listed on IDEAS
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