nep-knm New Economics Papers
on Knowledge Management and Knowledge Economy
Issue of 2011‒08‒09
three papers chosen by
Laura Stefanescu
European Research Centre of Managerial Studies in Business Administration

  1. The probability of nontrivial common knowledge By Andrea Collevecchio; Marco LiCalzi
  2. Understanding R&D Policy: Efficiency or Politics? By Fidel Pérez Sebastián
  3. In search for the not-invented-here syndrome: The role of knowledge sources and firm success By Hussinger, Katrin; Wastyn, Annelies

  1. By: Andrea Collevecchio (Department of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venezia); Marco LiCalzi (Department of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venezia)
    Abstract: We study the probability that two or more agents can attain common knowledge of nontrivial events when the size of the state space grows large. We adopt the standard epistemic model where the knowledge of an agent is represented by a partition of the state space. Each agent is endowed with a partition generated by a random scheme. Assuming that agents' partitions are independently and identically distributed, we prove that the asymptotic probability of nontrivial common knowledge undergoes a phase transition. Regardless of the number of agents, when their cognitive capacity is suciently large, the probability goes to one; and when it is small, it goes to zero.
    Keywords: Common knowledge; Epistemic game theory; Random partitions
    JEL: C72 D83
    Date: 2011–07
  2. By: Fidel Pérez Sebastián (Universidad de Alicante)
    Abstract: This paper searches for the determinants of government-funded R&D. The goal is to disentangle whether the efficiency considerations overwhelmingly emphasized by the theoretical literature are indeed the main driving force behind public R&D expenditures. Another goal of the paper is to assess whether other types of innovation policy such as the degree of patent protection can have an impact on private R&D. I find that there are important differences between rich and poor nations at this respect. In particular, R&D-specific efficiency factors are not significant to explain public R&D in rich nations, whereas related variables such as the access to private credit and knowledge spillovers are important in less developed economies; in rich countries, public innovation effort can be better explained by the political economy variables that determine the size of governments. Private R&D, on the other hand, depends in high income economies on R&D policies that try to improve R&D efficiency, but is highly determined by government size in less income nations. Results suggest that more research on political economy theories of innovation is essential to understand R&D investment.
    Keywords: R&D, policy, market failures, political factors
    Date: 2011–07
  3. By: Hussinger, Katrin; Wastyn, Annelies
    Abstract: The not-invented-here (NIH) syndrome refers to internal resistance in a company against externally developed knowledge. In this paper, we argue that the occurrence of the NIH syndrome depends on the source of external knowledge and the success of the firm that aims at adapting external knowledge. In line with social identity theory, we hypothesize that internal resistance is most likely to occur if knowledge is acquired from similar organizations. This hypothesis is supported by our finding that the NIH syndrome occurs when knowledge is acquired from competitors but not if knowledge is acquired from suppliers, customers or universities. Further, we show that successful companies are most likely to experience the NIH syndrome (if knowledge is acquired from competitors). This is in line with our hypothesis that firm success increases the extent to which employees identify themselves with their company resulting in stronger in-group favoritism and a superior tendency to reject externally generated knowledge. --
    Keywords: Not-invented-here syndrome,external knowledge sources,firm success,social identity theory,organizational identity
    JEL: O31 O32 O33
    Date: 2011

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