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The micro-determinants of meso-level learning and innovation: evidence from a Chilean wine cluster
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-07, 20:20 authored by Elisa Giuliani, Martin Bell
Most analyses of the relationship between spatial clustering and the technological learning of firms have emphasised the influence of the former on the latter, and have focused on intra-cluster learning as the driver of innovative performance. This paper reverses those perspectives. It examines the influence of individual firms’ absorptive capacities on both the functioning of the intra-cluster knowledge system and its interconnection with extra-cluster knowledge. It applies social network analysis to identify different cognitive roles played by cluster firms and the overall structure of the knowledge system of a wine cluster in Chile. The results show that knowledge is not diffused evenly ‘in the air’, but flows within a core group of firms characterised by advanced absorptive capacities. Firms’ different cognitive roles include some—as in the case of technological gatekeepers—that contribute actively to the acquisition, creation and diffusion of knowledge. Others remain cognitively isolated from the cluster, though in some cases strongly linked to extra-cluster knowledge. Possible implications for policy are noted.
Department affiliated with
- SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit Publications
Noteshis paper introduces for almost the first time in the literature a method of actively measuring the fashionable concept of `absorptive capacity in networks. The modelling is based on social network analysis but applied in a knowledge-creating environment. Dr Giuliani contributed more of the analytical framework and evidence for the leading journal in research policy.
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