In Search of Opportunities: Three Essays on Global Linkages for Innovation

Gouya Harirchi

    Research output: Book/ReportPh.D. thesisResearch

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    Globalization is an important theme in a broad set of conversations, from everyday talks to political and academic debates, both in positive and also negative terms. But what are the positive implications of globalization for the economic development of the countries? Do the effects of globalization on innovation differ between developed and developing economies? This PhD dissertation aims to explore these questions by identifying under which conditions globalization – conceived as a process fostering knowledge flows at a global scale – has played an important role in the innovation process. The contribution of this dissertation is to the field of geography of innovation. Despite recent research on the spatial dimension of sources of innovation, this field still remains focused on the impact of local and global linkages, for firms in the advanced economies. This thesis contributes to this matter, by extending the discussion also to the organizational learning of firms from emerging economies. Theoretically, it builds on contributions from innovation studies, economic geography and international business. Empirically, the focus is on firm level data gathered from emerging economies (BRICS) as well as several European countries. The thesis consists of an introductory chapter followed by a literature review on previous works related to spatial aspects of knowledge sourcing for learning and innovation, three essays at different stages of publication, and finally conclusions. Contextualizing the searching behaviour and the engagement in global collaborations is at the core of all three papers. By using firm level data and conducting comparative studies between advanced (North) and emerging economies (South), the first two papers analyse the impact of global knowledge flows for novelty of innovation. The third paper explores the impact of high level of local embeddedness on firm’s engagement in global sourcing of knowledge; this paper relies on data from Indian firms The first paper investigates the effects of local and global innovation collaborations on the degree of novelty in innovations of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the information and communications technology (ICT) sector by considering the country in which these firms are located. The findings of this study show that global linkages do indeed impact on the degree of novelty of innovation. However, this impact is highly positive on the innovativeness of Scandinavian firms, whereas for the Indian SMEs, the regional linkages matter most. The second paper explores the role played by active collaboration with users on the degree of novelty of innovation by focusing on the location of both users and producers. The results indicate that collaborating with international users is positively related to higher degrees of novelty. Furthermore, firms in low- and middle-income countries benefit more from South- South user collaboration than from South-North collaboration. The third paper addresses the relation between high level of local embeddedness and engagement in global linkages for innovations -as a pre-requisite for catching-up- by comparing the engagement of group-affiliated firms, that are expected to present higher degree of internal collaboration, with standalone firms. The results indicate that affiliation to a business group also increases the likelihood of engagement in global linkages for innovation.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationFrederiksberg
    PublisherCopenhagen Business School [Phd]
    Number of pages185
    ISBN (Print)9788793339125
    ISBN (Electronic)9788793339132
    Publication statusPublished - 2015
    SeriesPhD series

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