nep-knm New Economics Papers
on Knowledge Management and Knowledge Economy
Issue of 2008‒06‒27
nine papers chosen by
Laura Stefanescu
European Research Centre of Managerial Studies in Business Administration

  1. Top Management Characteristics of Foreign MNC Affiliates and Affiliate Performance in Japan : Knowledge-Based and Upper Echelon Perspectives By Tomoki Sekiguchi; Ralf Bebenroth; Donghao Li
  2. Bounded Decision Making: From Description to Improvement By Dolly Chugh; Katherine Lyford Milkman; Max H. Bazerman
  3. Technology and development: Unpacking the relationship(s) By Jan Fagerberg; Martin Srholec
  4. The Productivity Impact of R&D Investment: Evidence from European Microdata By Raquel Ortega-Argilés; Lesley Potters; Marco Vivarelli
  5. Matrices of science and technology interactions: implications for development By Leonardo Costa Ribeiro; Ricardo Machado Ruiz; Américo Tristão Bernardes; Eduardo da Motta e Albuquerque
  6. Financially Constrained Fluctuations in an Evolving Network Economy By Domenico Delli Gatti; Mauro Gallegati; Bruce C. Greenwald; Alberto Russo; Joseph E. Stiglitz
  7. The Technology Endowments of Spin-off Companies By E. VAN DE VELDE; B. CLARYSSE; M. WRIGHT
  9. EU-US differences in the size of R&D intensive firms: Do they explain the overall R&D intensity gap? By Raquel Ortega-Argiles; Andries Brandsma

  1. By: Tomoki Sekiguchi (Graduate School of Economics, Osaka University); Ralf Bebenroth (Research Institute for Economics and Business Administration, Kobe University); Donghao Li (Wakayama University)
    Abstract: Drawing from the knowledge-based view of MNCs and the upper echelon perspective, we examine the relationship between top management characteristics of MNC affiliates and affiliate performance. Using a sample of 643 foreign MNC affiliates operating in Japan, we found that when the length of an affiliate operation was shorter, the affiliate performed better under the expatriate managing director rather than the Japanese manager. We also found that when the size of an affiliate was larger and the length of operation was shorter, the affiliate performed better under the larger rather than smaller proportion of expatriates in top management teams. Implications for research and practice of top management staffing of MNC foreign affiliates are discussed.
    Date: 2008–01
  2. By: Dolly Chugh (New York University, Stern School of Business); Katherine Lyford Milkman (Harvard Business School); Max H. Bazerman (Harvard Business School, Negotiation, Organizations & Markets Unit)
    Abstract: The optimal moment to address the question of how to improve human decision making has arrived. In recent research, judgment and decision-making scholars have moved beyond the concept of bounded rationality to recognize a broader set of bounds that affect decision making. We specify a taxonomy that assembles the field's knowledge about these decision-making bounds and organizes efforts toward deepening this knowledge and developing strategies for improvement. Specifically, we group five identified decision-making bounds into three broad categories: bounds on information processing, bounds on the optimal weighting of priorities, and bounds on noticing information. The first category encompasses bounded rationality, the first bound to be discovered and studied extensively. The second category encompasses bounded willpower and bounded self-interest. The third category encompasses two recently identified bounds: bounded ethicality and bounded awareness. By organizing diverse theories into a clear framework, the taxonomy should aid researchers and educators in identifying new strategies for improving decision making.
    Date: 2008–06
  3. By: Jan Fagerberg (Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo); Martin Srholec (Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo)
    Abstract: Innovation is, as Joseph Schumpeter once pointed out, above all a combinatory phenomenon. Success in accessing knowledge and exploiting it in a way that is beneficial for development depends on the ability to combine many different skills and resources, of which many will be external to the firm. Arguably, political choices, past as well as present, the quality of governance and the business environment, availability of skills, finance and broader social and cultural characteristics may all have a say for how well this combinatory dynamics works. Based on a review of the literature on how technological, economic and social factors interact in the development process this paper sets out to explore these interrelationships empirically. The results, based on data for 75 countries on different levels of development, suggest that there is a strong correlation between technological capability, (innovation-friendly) governance and social capital, confirming, it is suggested, the important role played by politics and deeper social and cultural factors for technological catch-up (or lack of such). This contrasts with the role played by for instance openness to trade, FDI, etc., which - according to the results presented here - hardly correlates with anything.
    Date: 2008–06
  4. By: Raquel Ortega-Argilés (Joint Research Centre-European Commission, IPTS Seville); Lesley Potters (Joint Research Centre-European Commission and Utrecht School of Economics); Marco Vivarelli (Joint Research Centre-European Commission, Catholic University, Milan and Max Planck Institute of Economics, Jena)
    Abstract: The aim of this study is to investigate the relationship between a firm's R&D activities and its productivity using a unique micro data panel dataset and looking at sectoral peculiarities which may emerge; more specifically, we used an unbalanced longitudinal database consisting of 532 top European R&D investors over the six-year period 2000-2005. Our main findings can be summarised along the following lines: knowledge stock has a significant positive impact on a firm's productivity, with an overall elasticity of about 0.125; this general result is largely consistent with previous literature in terms of the sign, the significance and the estimated magnitude of the relevant coefficient. More interestingly, the coefficient increases monotonically when we move from the low-tech to the medium-high and high-tech sectors, ranging from a minimum of 0.05/0.07 to a maximum of 0.16/0.18. This outcome, in contrast with recently-renewed acceptance of low-tech sectors as a preferred target of R&D investment, suggests that firms in high-tech sectors are still far ahead in terms of the impact on productivity of their R&D investments, at least as regards top European R&D investors.
    Keywords: R&D, productivity, knowledge stock, panel data, perpetual inventory method
    JEL: O33
    Date: 2008–06–18
  5. By: Leonardo Costa Ribeiro (Cedeplar-UFMG); Ricardo Machado Ruiz (Cedeplar-UFMG); Américo Tristão Bernardes (UFOP); Eduardo da Motta e Albuquerque (Cedeplar-UFMG)
    Abstract: Scientific and other non-patent references (NPRs) in patents are important tools to analyze interactions between science and technology. This paper organizes a database with 514,894 USPTO patents granted globally in 1974, 1982, 1990, 1998 and 2006. There are 165,762 patents with at least one reference to science and engineering (S&E) literature, and there are 1,375,503 references. In 2006 there are 83 countries with USPTO patent citing S&E literature. Through a lexical analysis 71.1% of this S&E literature is classified by S&E fields. These data underscore the elaboration of global and national tri-dimensional matrices (by OST technological domains, ISI science and engineering fields and number of references). Descriptive statistics investigate how science and technology linkages differ over time across countries and across levels of development. This paper highlights how the existence (or not) of a pattern of structured growth differentiates mature and immature systems of innovation.
    Keywords: science and technology linkages, stages of economic development, systems of innovation
    JEL: O O3
    Date: 2008–06
  6. By: Domenico Delli Gatti; Mauro Gallegati; Bruce C. Greenwald; Alberto Russo; Joseph E. Stiglitz
    Abstract: We explore the properties of a credit network characterized by inside credit - i.e. credit relationships connecting downstream (D) and upstream (U) firms - and outside credit - i.e. credit relationships connecting firms and banks. The structure of the network changes over time due to the preferred-partner choice rule: each agent chooses the partner who charges the lowest price. The net worth of D firms turns out to be the driver of fluctuations. U production, in fact, is determined by demand of intermediate inputs on the part of D firms and production of the latter is financially constrained, i.e. determined by the availability of internal finance proxied by net worth. The output of simulations shows that at the macroeconomic level a business cycle can develop as a consequence of the complex interaction of the agents' financial conditions. We can also reproduce the main stylized facts of firms' demography, i.e. the power law distribution of firms' size and the Laplace distribution of firms' growth rates.
    JEL: E3
    Date: 2008–06
    Abstract: Innovative start-ups, including spin-offs from universities and companies, play a vital role in the development and growth of emerging, high-technology industries. Research attention has traditionally focused on the links between demographic, educational, psychological and financial influences on start-up activity and growth. The extent to which the characteristics of technology inherited from the parent, important for spin-offs, helps explain post start-up performance has been neglected. We analyse the scope and newness of the endowed technology as a predictor of post-spin-off growth for corporate and university spin-offs. Using a novel, hand-collected dataset, 48 corporate and 73 university spin-offs were identified, comprising the whole population of such spin-offs in Flanders over the period 1991-2002. We find that corporate spin-offs seem to benefit from a narrow scope of technology and a high level of newness of technology, while university spin-offs benefit from a broad scope of technology and a lower level of newness of technology. We conclude that the same choice of technology endowments may have a different impact on the spin-offs’ growth, since spin-offs start with different knowledge inheritance.
    Keywords: technology endowment, corporate spin-offs, university spin-offs
    Date: 2008–04
    Abstract: Organizational change often yields limited success. Failure in many cases is due to the lack of motivation or readiness for change among organizational members. This study proposes and tests a meso-level model of readiness for change. More specifically this article examined the influence of organizational climate factors on readiness for change over and above the effects of their eponymous lower level psychological climate variables (i.e., trust in top management, history of change, participation in decision making, and quality of change communication). By means of a large scale survey administered in 84 Belgian companies, a total of 2543 responses were collected. HLM analyses revealed a contextual effect for quality of change communication on the three components of readiness for change (emotional, cognitive and intentional), even after controlling for psychological change climate. Furthermore, the results indicated that the individual perceptions of history of change, participation in decision making, and quality of change communication were positively correlated with readiness for change. These findings are discussed in relation to previous literature.
    Keywords: readiness for change, meso-level perspective, history of change, trust in top management, participation in decision making, and quality of change communication
    Date: 2008–04
  9. By: Raquel Ortega-Argiles (Joint Research Centre-European Commission, IPTS Seville); Andries Brandsma (Joint Research Centre-European Commission, IPTS Seville)
    Abstract: The average firm size of the top R&D investors among US-based companies is smaller than that of the EU-based firms. Does this help to explain why the US has a greater R&D intensity, or is the higher firm size in the EU, just as its lower R&D intensity, determined by the sectors in which the top R&D investors are operating? Using data on the top-R&D investors from the 2006 EU Industrial R&D Investment Scoreboard, the size differential between R&D performers in the EU and US is more closely examined. A first observation is that, despite great differences between sectors, the overall distribution of companies' R&D investments in both economies is remarkably similar, as opposed to the distribution of the R&D/sales ratios of the same two sets of companies. The notion that size plays a role, independent of the sectoral composition of R&D, is then confirmed by regression analysis. In the US as well as in the EU, smaller sized Scoreboard companies tend to spend a larger proportion of their income from sales on R&D.
    Keywords: R&D intensity, firm size, panel data
    JEL: L11
    Date: 2008–06–18

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