nep-knm New Economics Papers
on Knowledge Management and Knowledge Economy
Issue of 2011‒03‒19
six papers chosen by
Laura Stefanescu
European Research Centre of Managerial Studies in Business Administration

  1. Motivations and determinants of technological innovations. A theoretical survey (In French) By Mohieddine Rahmouni (GREThA, CNRS, UMR 5113); Murat Yildizoglu (GREQAM, CNRS, UMR 6579)
  2. Innovation, Workers Skills and Industrial Relations: Empirical Evidence from Firm-level Italian Data. By Davide Antonioli; Paolo Pini; Rocco Manzalini
  3. The Behavioural Additionlity Dimension in Innovation Policies: a Review By Davide Antonioli; Alberto Marzucchi
  4. Key Issues in the Assessment of Seta Performance in South Africa’s National Skills Development Strategy. By Sean Archer
  5. The impact of innovation brokers on interfirm network evolution By CARL KOCK; REMZI GOZUBUYUK
  6. Knowledge and Job Opportunities in a Gender Perspective: Insights from Italy By Angela Cipollone; Marcella Corsi; Carlo D'ippoliti

  1. By: Mohieddine Rahmouni (GREThA, CNRS, UMR 5113); Murat Yildizoglu (GREQAM, CNRS, UMR 6579)
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to present the theoretical literature dedicated to the analysis of the motivations and the determinants of firms\' technological innovations. To this end, we follow a strategy of presentation that starts with the simplest possible framework in which the innovation can occur (Robinson Crusoe economy), and that encompasses gradually richer economic contexts. The discussion is hence organized in a progressive logic, ranging from purely individual motivations and conditions of innovations (in the case of Robinson, alone on his island), towards the more complex case where the innovative activities take place in an international framework, under particular institutional configurations, depending on the considered countries. The intermediate stages successively introduce the following economic phenomena: demand, sectoral dimensions, competition, public authorities, and finally, international competition.
    Keywords: Technological innovation, Industrial economics, Evolutionary economics
    JEL: O12 O30
    Date: 2011
  2. By: Davide Antonioli; Paolo Pini; Rocco Manzalini
    Abstract: The shifting of labour demand towards relatively more skilled workers has been a hot issue in the economic field for many years. A consolidated explanation for the upskilling phenomenon is that technological-organisational changes have driven the labour demand with detrimental consequences for less skilled workers (skill-biased technological-organisational change). In order to upgrade the skill workforce the firm has at least two main channels at its disposal: the external labour market strategy, mainly based on hiring and firing mechanisms; the internal labour market strategies, which improve the skill base of the employees through training activities. The main objective of the present work is to verify the relations between innovative strategies and both the workforce composition and the training activities, within an integrated framework that also leads us to consider the role of specific aspects of the industrial relations system. The firm level analysis is based on original datasets which include data on manufacturing firms for two Italian local production systems, located in the Emilia-Romagna region. The results suggest that the firms use both the two channels to improve their skill base, which is actually related to the innovation activities, although there is weak supporting evidence of the use of external labour markets to upgrade the workforce skills: the upskilling phenomenon seems to be associated to specific innovative activities in the technological sphere, while specific organisational aspects emerge as detrimental for blue collars. On the side of internal labour market strategies the evidence supports the hypothesis that innovation intensity induce the firms to implement internal procedures in order to upskill the workforce, confirming the importance of internal labour market strategies. Moreover, we have recognized the important role of firm level industrial relations in determining the training activities for the blue collar workers.
    Keywords: technological change; organisational change; industrial relations; skills
    JEL: J24 J53 L23 L6 O33
    Date: 2011–02–03
  3. By: Davide Antonioli; Alberto Marzucchi
    Abstract: The concept of additionality, when public interventions are considered, can be synthesised as the net effects that would not have occurred in the absence of the intervention of the public actor. The present paper reviews the body of literature dealing with the concept of additionality, devoting particular attention to its behavioural dimension (i.e. changes in beneficiaries' behaviours resulting from the policy intervention). In the first sections it is stressed that the behavioural additionality, though not yet clearly defined and still characterised by some drawbacks, complement the input and output dimensions of the concept of additionality and can be used to evaluate innovation policies according to the evolutionary and system perspectives. In the subsequent sections we present a review of the recent econometric and quantitative studies focused on the behavioural additionality in order to present a state of the art of the methods, with their limits and thei strengthens, that can be used in this kind of evaluation.
    Keywords: evaluation; additionality; innovation policy; behavioural additionality
    Date: 2010–10–01
  4. By: Sean Archer (SALDRU, School of Economics, University of Cape Town)
    Abstract: One of the most dangerous aspects of the global knowledge-based economy lies in the tensions created by the growing ‘knowledge gap’ between the knowledge-rich countries of the North and the (generally) knowledge-poor countries of the South. Wealth creates the ability to create the knowledge that can be used to create further wealth. But, without adequate means to distribute the benefits accruing from such knowledge, social disparities, and the jealousies they invoke, will only increase. Editorial, Nature 6714, 1999: 1.
    Date: 2010–10
  5. By: CARL KOCK (Instituto de Empresa); REMZI GOZUBUYUK (Instituto de Empresa)
    Abstract: In recent years, the development of the idea of “Open Innovationâ€(Chesbrough, 2004; 2006) lead to the emergence of “Innovation brokers†who connect those seeking for solutions with a rather large number of potential knowledge suppliers. In this paper we analyze the implication that the existence of such Innovation brokers has on other organizational interchanges firms may engage in. Specifically, we ask how the inter-organizational network of a particular firm evolves over time if they use an Innovation broker or not. Apart from contributing to both, network theory by shedding light on the evolution of network ties, and the innovation literature by adding to our understanding of how knowledg
  6. By: Angela Cipollone (Department of Ecoomics and Business, LUISS University); Marcella Corsi (Sapienza University of Rome); Carlo D'ippoliti (Sapienza University of Rome)
    Abstract: This paper proposes a multidimensional concept of knowledge, encompassing several formal and informal skills to complement education and on-the-job training, under a gender perspective. By considering the case of Italy, we estimate the impact of such a concept of knowledge on men’s and women’s employment status and wages. Results point out that despite much rhetoric about the fact that women have gradually overcome men in terms of educational attainments, women still lack of the main skills and competencies that can profitably be used on the labor market. In Italy, women’s accumulation of labor market experience is mostly constrained by unpaid work and care work burdens. These activities may be regarded as a source of potential knowledge in terms of social and interpersonal skills, managerial and organizational capacities; but they do not seem to be positively valued by the market, either in terms of employability nor in terms of wages. Gender segregation in education seems to be still a relevant issue, by compressing both women’s employment chances and wages. Thus educational and cultural policies aimed at overcoming traditional gender roles and images among the younger students seem a very sensible policy option.
    Keywords: gender differentials, returns to knowledge, human capital.
    JEL: J24 J16 C43 J71 C14
    Date: 2011

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