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Do inventors talk to strangers? On proximity and collaborative knowledge creation

Crescenzi, Riccardo and Nathan, Max and Rodríguez-Pose, Andrés (2016) Do inventors talk to strangers? On proximity and collaborative knowledge creation. Research Policy, 45 (1). pp. 177-194. ISSN 0048-7333

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Identification Number: 10.1016/j.respol.2015.07.003

Abstract

This paper examines the characteristics of the collaborations between inventors in the United Kingdom (UK) by looking at what types of proximities – geographic, organisational, cognitive, social, and cultural-ethnic – between inventors are prevalent in partnerships that ultimately lead to technological progress. Using a new panel of UK inventors this paper provides an analysis of associations between these ‘proximities’ and co-patenting. The results show that while collaboration within firms, research centres and universities remains crucial, external networks of inventors are key feature of innovation teams. The analysis shows that external networks are highly dependent on previous social connections, but are generally unconstrained by cultural or cognitive factors. Geographical proximity is also weakly linked with external networks. Our results suggest that innovation policies should, rather than focus on spatial clustering, facilitate the formation of open and diverse networks of inventors.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: http://www.journals.elsevier.com/research-policy/
Additional Information: © 2015 The Authors © CC BY 4.0
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
JEL classification: O - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth > O3 - Technological Change; Research and Development > O31 - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
O - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth > O3 - Technological Change; Research and Development > O33 - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
R - Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics > R1 - General Regional Economics > R11 - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, and Changes
R - Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics > R2 - Household Analysis > R23 - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population
Sets: Departments > European Institute
Departments > Geography and Environment
Research centres and groups > Spatial Economics Research Centre
Collections > Economists Online
Date Deposited: 21 Jul 2015 12:12
Last Modified: 02 Nov 2015 14:50
Projects: SSH-CT-2010-266959, grant agreement no.269868, ES/L0003945/1
Funders: European Union Seventh Framework Programme FP7/2007-2013, European Research Council, Economic and Social Research Council, BIS, DCLG
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/62778

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