Sources of inter-firm heterogeneity in accessing knowledge-creation benefits within technology clusters
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SourceIndustry and Innovation, 21, 6, (2014), pp. 476-493
Article / Letter to editor
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Economische theorie en economisch beleid
Industry and Innovation
SubjectDistributional Conflicts in a Globalizing World: Consequences for State-Market-Civil Society Arrangements
We build on recent literature to highlight the distinction between knowledge-diffusion and knowledge-creation benefits of technology clustering and argue that firms located in technology clusters will have differential access to the latter. To explain the antecedents of such differential access, we first argue that clustering gives rise to three knowledge-creation benefits: easier identification of potential knowledge partners with complementary knowledge, easier initiation of knowledge partnerships and increased effectiveness of knowledge partnerships. Subsequently, we develop a conceptual model and propositions that focus on a cluster firm's awareness of knowledge assets inside the cluster, attractiveness as a knowledge partner and ability to benefit from knowledge partnerships to explain differential access by firms to these three knowledge-creation benefits that clustering provides. This study highlights the theoretical significance of distinguishing externality-type benefits of technology clustering from benefits that firms need to actively pursue, and discusses implications for firms' location decisions.
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