nep-knm New Economics Papers
on Knowledge Management and Knowledge Economy
Issue of 2009‒03‒14
six papers chosen by
Laura Stefanescu
European Research Centre of Managerial Studies in Business Administration

  1. An introduction to the system dynamics of technological change the basic tools By Antonelli Cristiano
  2. Open Innovation in firms located in an intermediate technology developed country By Mariana Lopes; Aurora A.C. Teixeira
  3. The Evolution of the Corporation: Organization, Finance, Knowledge and Corporate Social Responsibility By Peer Zumbansen
  4. Innovation Dynamics in Multipartneralliance Teams: A Focus on Human Resource Management Fit By Estrada Vaquero, Isabel; Martín Cruz, Natalia; Pérez Santana, Pilar
  5. Technological diffusion and dynamic gains from trade By Cavallaro, Eleonora; Mulino, Marcella
  6. Extracting Value From Information Technologies By Benoit A. Aubert; Blaize Horner Reich

  1. By: Antonelli Cristiano (University of Turin)
    Abstract: This Handbook presents a systematic attempt to show how building upon the achievements of the economics of innovation, an economic approach to complexity can be elaborated and fruitfully implemented. This introductory chapter articulates the view that innovation is the emergent property of a system characterized by organized complexity. It implements an approach that enables to provide economic foundations to analyzing the incentives of economic action and the notion of organized complexity. In this approach agents retain the typical characteristics of economic actors, including intentional choice and strategic conduct, augmented by the attribution of creativity. Economic agents are able to react to out-ofequilibrium conditions and may try and change both their production and their utility functions. The localized context of action and the web of knowledge interactions and externalities into which each agent is embedded is crucial to make their reaction actually creative, as opposed to adaptive, so as to shape the actual effects of their endogenous efforts to change their technologies and their preferences. In turn, the successful introduction of new localized technologies, changes the structural features of the system and hence the flows of knowledge externalities and interactions. This dynamic loop exhibits the characters of a recursive, non-ergodic and path dependent historic process. This approach enables to move away from the static, lowlevel complexity- of general equilibrium that applies when both technologies and preferences are static, as well as from the random variation of evolutionary thinking, and to grasp the system dynamics of technological change as an endogenous and recurrent process that combines rent-seeking intentionality at the agent levels with the appreciation of the knowledge externalities and interactions that stem from the organized complexity of the structural characters of the system.
    Date: 2009–02
  2. By: Mariana Lopes (Faculdade de Economia, Universidade do Porto); Aurora A.C. Teixeira (CEFUP, Faculdade de Economia, Universidade do Porto; INESC Porto)
    Abstract: Open Innovation is a flow of inputs and outputs of knowledge and technology which favours, at the firm level, the acceleration of the innovation process, as well as the establishment and penetration of firms in new markets. This type of innovation incorporates technological innovation from internal and external sources, as well as different ways to access markets. The empirical studies in the area reveal that there is a significant bias in favour of countries of technological frontier, such as the United States, Finland, the Netherlands, Germany or Sweden. The present study aims at covering this gap in literature by examining firms in a country of intermediate technology development – Portugal. Based on 70 innovative firms located in Portugal we found that open innovation is only partially diffused throughout these firms. In addition, open innovation is more widespread in terms of external absorption of knowledge/ technology rather than in terms of knowledge/technology transfer. This result may indicate lack of awareness about the economic potential of making available to third parties the technologies internally created. This may require a different approach to organization/management of R&D, in particular, and of innovation, in general.
    Keywords: Open Innovation; Intermediate technology development; Portugal.
    JEL: O32
    Date: 2009–03
  3. By: Peer Zumbansen
    Abstract: This paper, which selectively focuses on the contested concept of Corporate Social Responsibility [CSR], forms part of a larger research project on the evolution of corporate governance. This research posits the evolution of corporate governance along three historical paradigms: first, the economic/industrial organization paradigm, second, the financial paradigm, and third, the knowledge paradigm. With regard to CSR, the paper explores the promises and shortcomings of the concept against the background of an evolutionary theory of corporate governance. The identification of three historical-conceptual paradigms allows us to trace the development of the relation between a general discourse on corporate governance regulation [CGR] on the one hand and a more specialized, often polemic debate over corporate (social, environmental, human rights) responsibilities on the other. On the basis of the review of the three paradigms of CSR over the course of more than one hundred years, the paper concludes that there is no convincing justification to separate the general Corporate Governance from the more specific CSR discourse when assessing the nature of the corporation. Instead, it is argued that a more adequate understanding of what defines a corporation is gained when capturing its embedded nature in a continuously changing domestic, global and functional environment. Besides being both a legal fiction and an economic actor, the business corporation is assuming a host of other roles in a functionally differentiated global society. The paper suggests that the generation and dissemination of knowledge, both internally and externally, has become the defining feature of the firm. The corporation as a knowledge actor succeeds the prior stages of assessing it as a private, political or financial actor, without however erasing these dimensions of the firm. In that, the history of the corporation - as concept and reality - shares important features with that of the state - as concept and as fact.
    Keywords: corporate social responsibility, corporate governance, financialisation, economic sociology, knowledge society, uncertainty, risk, management
    JEL: G38 K22
    Date: 2008–12
  4. By: Estrada Vaquero, Isabel (Departamento de Organización de Empresas y Comercialización e Investigación de Mercados, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Universidad de Valladolid); Martín Cruz, Natalia (Departamento de Organización de Empresas y Comercialización e Investigación de Mercados, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Universidad de Valladolid); Pérez Santana, Pilar (Departamento de Organización de Empresas y Comercialización e Investigación de Mercados, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Universidad de Valladolid)
    Abstract: We explore the innovation dynamics in multipartner-alliance teams (MA teams), a particularly complex type of teams. MA teams are temporary project teams composed of members from different partners and are in charge of attaining innovation. In particular, we focus on the potential contributions of human resource management (HRM) fit on the creation of a proper MA team climate for innovation. We address the necessity of reconceptualizing the notion of HRM fit from a holistic view, offering a new multi-level conceptualization. At the partner-level, we include the two traditional dimensions of HRM fit (vertical fit and horizontal fit); at the alliance-level, we include a new dimension (‘relational fit’). Our arguments allow us to conclude that the power of the HRM fit at the partner-level is reinforced/undermined depending on the synergistic effects of the combination of the partners’ sets of alliance-specific HRM practices for a particular MA team. Some directions for further work are suggested.
    Keywords: Multipartner alliances, team, fit, Human Resources Management, innovation
    Date: 2008–12
  5. By: Cavallaro, Eleonora; Mulino, Marcella
    Abstract: We consider a technologically backward country and analyse the implications on competitiveness and long-run growth of the quality content of traded goods. We build an endogenous growth model where quality improvements stem from research activity taking place in the R&D sector, and where the relative quality content of goods matter for export and import demand functions. We show that the possibility of an optimal growth with a balanced current account and no adverse terms-of-trade effects is closely related to the evolution of the country’s technological distance with respect to the trade partner: with an unfavourable quality-dynamics the country cannot engage successfully in “non-price” competition. Thus, long-run growth is coupled with an adverse export to import ratio, and a balanced trade requires a continuous offsetting fall in relative prices, either through devaluations or wage deflations. We then allow for international knowledge spillovers that increase the productivity of labour resources devoted to research in a way which is proportional to the technological distance between the countries. We show that the greater the country’s ability to absorb foreign knowledge and improve upon foreign technologies, the greater the gains in competitiveness, and the benefits to long-run growth. A numerical simulation confirms our findings.
    Keywords: Vertical innovation; Technological change and catching up; Economic growth of open economies
    JEL: O33 F43
    Date: 2008–12
  6. By: Benoit A. Aubert; Blaize Horner Reich
    Date: 2009–03–01

This nep-knm issue is ©2009 by Laura Stefanescu. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
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