nep-tid New Economics Papers
on Technology and Industrial Dynamics
Issue of 2007‒02‒03
four papers chosen by

  1. Innovation and Labour Productivity in the Swiss Manufacturing Sector: An Analysis Based on Firm Panel Data By Spyros Arvanitis
  2. Firms’ Strategies for Knowledge and Technology Transfer with Public Research Organisations and Their Impact on Firms’ Performance : An Empirical Analysis Based on Firm-level Data By Spyros Arvanitis; Martin Woerter
  3. Regional Cooperation of Small & Medium Firms in Japanese Industrial Clusters By Arita, Tomokazu; Fujita, Masahisa; Kameyama, Yoshihiro
  4. Strategies Pursued by Swiss Firms in Investing in R&D at Foreign Locations : An Empirical Analysis Based on Firm-level Data By Heinz Hollenstein

  1. By: Spyros Arvanitis (Swiss Institute for Business Cycle Research (KOF), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH))
    Abstract: This paper investigates (a) the determinants of innovation performance and (b) the impact of innovation performance on labour productivity of Swiss manufacturing firms in the period 1994-2002. The data used in this study come from the KOF panel database and were collected in 1996, 1999 and 2002 respectively based on a questionnaire quite similar to that used in the Community Innovation Surveys (CIS). The use of a wide spectrum of indicators helps to test the robustness of the specification of the innovation equation as well as the robustness of the impact of innovation on economic performance. We find a clear-cut positive effect of innovation on labour productivity.
    Keywords: innovation, labour productivity, R&D expenditures
    JEL: O30
    Date: 2006–09
  2. By: Spyros Arvanitis (Swiss Institute for Business Cycle Research (KOF), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH)); Martin Woerter (Swiss Institute for Business Cycle Research (KOF), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH))
    Abstract: Based on a representative firm sample for Switzerland we empirically investigated strategic approaches for knowledge and technology transfer (KTT) activities between business firms and public research organisations. Based on cluster analysis of 19 different forms for KTT, three types of KTT strategies were identified, each of them correspond with a specific combination of some of the 19 different forms for KTT activities. It was found that they are determined mainly by variables related (a) to the absorptive capacity of a firm and (b) to the degree of appropriability of the returns of innovation, indicating that the followed strategy reflects the resource base of a firm. Further, it was shown that a firm’s obstacle profile with respect to KTT activities is related to the applied strategy. Firms with more intensive contacts emphasise risk-related factors and financial restrictions, while firms with less intensive contacts emphasise a mismatch between firm and university requirements with respect to KTT. Furthermore and most importantly, it was found that strategy matters for the impact of KTT on the innovation performance of a firm. In fact, KTT strategies related to the core R&D activities of a firm showed a greater impact compared to strategies related to ‘softer’ forms of transfer activities, e.g. informal contacts or education related contacts.
    Keywords: R&D strategies, knowledge and technology transfer, innovation activities, R&D activities
    JEL: O30
    Date: 2006–08
  3. By: Arita, Tomokazu; Fujita, Masahisa; Kameyama, Yoshihiro
    Abstract: This study examines the effects of intra-regional cooperation among firms and institutions on the growth of firms, using the unique data set of questionnaire survey collected in the three major industrial clusters in Japan. In contrast to the existing studies on regional innovations or agglomeration economies, this study explicitly focuses on the detailed contents of cooperative activities with two specific viewpoints: 1) the contents of regional cooperation in each of the three production stages of R&D, commercialization, and marketing, and 2) the detailed types of alliance partners. Our results demonstrate three points: 1) positive correlations are observed between the intensity of regional cooperation and the firm growth rate and R&D expenditure, 2) horizontal cooperation such as alliances with universities and cross-industry exchange organizations has positive significant effects on the growth rate of firms, which is in contrast with the previous studies that stressed only the role of vertically integrated inter-firm linkages in Japan, and 3) contents and partners of regional cooperation are different among the three clusters based on different dominant industries.
    Keywords: Industrial clusters, Industrial agglomeration, Knowledge externalities, Japan, Regional economic cooperation, Small and medium-scale enterprises, Research & development, Marketing, Commerce
    JEL: O18 O53 R3
    Date: 2006–12
  4. By: Heinz Hollenstein (Swiss Institute for Business Cycle Research (KOF), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH))
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is twofold: Firstly, we try to identify and characterise different types of strategies firms pursue in performing foreign R&D. Secondly, it is analysed whether the types of R&D strategies we identified in the first part differ in terms of their impact on firm productivity. In order to identify foreign R&D strategies we perform, in a first step, a non-hierarchical cluster analysis of data on the firms’ motives for investing abroad in R&D. In a second step, we characterise these clusters by use of a large number of variables that, according to the well-known OLI paradigm, determine a firm’s FDI in distribution, manufacturing and R&D. In this way, we can check whether the clusters identified by applying a (purely) statistical classification procedure effectively may be interpreted as “types of foreign R&D strategies”. We end up with four types of strategies, which significantly differ in terms of characteristics that are important according to the OLI approach. In the second part we estimate a production function where the standard factor inputs are complemented by domestic R&D and strategy-specific foreign R&D. It turns out that only one of the four strategies exerts a positive influence on firm productivity. However, it cannot be excluded that some of the other strategies have, in the longer run, a positive productivity effect as well. The paper also finds that foreign and domestic R&D, on balance, are complements.
    Keywords: Internationalisation of R&D; outward FDI in R&D; motives for foreign R&D; types of foreign R&D strategies; foreign R&D and productivity; substitution vs. complementarity of foreign and domestic R&D.
    JEL: F21 F23 O3
    Date: 2006–10

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