Category: Publication

Recruitment, Knowledge Integration and Modes of Innovation


About a week or so ago we received the favorable editorial decision about our (Sverre, Tore and I) paper “Recruitment, knowledge integration and modes of innovation” has been accepted for publication in Research Policy.

In the paper we investigate how the intrinsic characteristics of firms’ knowledge bases and processing routines have evolved with the past inflow of employees into the firm. The empirical analysis is based on linked public register and innovation survey data for Norway merged with the Norwegian innovation survey. We find that recruitment from universities, research institutes and higher education institutions increases the capacity of the firm to generate technical inventions. Yet, the organizational knowledge bases and processing routines on which commercial innovation output depends, are strengthend only by the recruitment that has occurred from related industries. In the conclusion we draw implications for research, management and policy.

New Evolutionary Economics – Volume III

Just recently the – Volume III edited by Kurt Dopfer and by Jason Potts was published.
The set of three volumes of the New Evolutionary Economics series republishes selected articles in evolutionary economics. Volume I bundles contributions in evolutionary microeconomics, volume two is about evolutionary mesoeconomics. And volume three gathers key contributions in evolutionary macroeconomics.

The publisher says:

This authoritative collection, with an original introduction by the editors, will be of interest to scholars and researchers seeking to understand how evolutionary economics fits together and who seek to advance such an integrated approach.

The third volume republishes our ten year old work which has originally been published as  Cantner, U., Ebersberger, B., Hanusch, H., Kruger, J. J., & Pyka, A.. (2004). The Twin Peaks in National Income: Parametric and Nonparametric Estimates. Revue economique, 55(6), 1127-1144. 

Best Paper Award

Recently we received the news that our paper “Open innovation practices and their effect on innovation performance” published by the International Journal of Innovation and Technology Management has received the Best Paper Award 2012 by the journal. To the best of our knowledge this paper is the first to develop a complete indicator framework for examining open innovation practices and their impact on innovativeness and commercial innovation performance. The analysis  yields a number of results which are relevant for innovation management and policy. Visit IJITM’s site here. Implications for innovation policy are discussed more thoroughly here.

One of the most downloaded articles in Applied Economic Letters

We have just received the notice that our paper “The relationship between international innovation collaboration, intramural R&D and SMEs innovation performance: a quantile regression approach” is among the Top 10 of the most downloaded papers in Applied Economics Letters in 2013. Currently it is free for download.

Regional Knowledge Bases & Extra-Regional Collaboration

Recently we, that is Christina Koller, Sverre J. Herstad and I, received the news that our joint paper “Does the composition of regional knowledge bases influence extra-regional collaboration for innovation?” is published by Applied Economics Letters today.

The paper emphasizes that ther is a growing research interest in the relationship between the composition of regional knowledge bases, and the extra-regional collaborative ties  by actors during their development work. In order to investigate this relationship, we use patent data to characterize European NUTS 3 regions by their i) comparative Technological Specializations; and ii) Related Technological Variety. We find domestic, extra-regional collaboration to be negatively associated with regional Technological Specialization and Related Technological Variety. At the same time, we find Related Technological Variety to serve in support of international innovation collaboration.

Having the data ready it was technically a bit demanding to have a balanced panel and a fractional response variable. First that reminded us very much of the situation in Papke and Wooldridge (1996), where they introduce a regression model for fractional response in cross section data. This suggested regression model resembles the traditional logit or probit for binary responses. Papke and Wooldridge recently extended the model for balanced panels (Papke and Wooldridge, 2008; Wooldridge, 2011) and suggest estimating population-averaged panel-data models by using a Generalized Estimating Equation (GEE; Liang and Zenger, 1986). Therefore, we estimate a generalized linear model with our fractional dependent variable  and the independent variables. In our particular case we use the logit function as the link function  and the binomial distribution as the distribution. Additionally, the GEE estimation requires the specification of a working correlation matrix , which postulates that the correlations are not a function of the independent variables. We employ a so-called ‘exchangeable’ correlation matrix that is particularly suitable here, as our panel contains a rather small time dimension (Papke and Wooldridge, 2008). To control for fixed technology and country effects, we follow Papke and Wooldridge (2008).


Liang, K.-Y. and Zeger, S. L. (1986) Longitudinal data analysis using generalized linear models, Biometrika, 7, 13–22.

Papke, L. E. and Wooldridge, J. M. (1996) Econometric methods for fractional response variables with an application to 401 (K) plan participation rates, Journal of Applied Econometrics, 11, 619–32.

Papke, L. E. and Wooldridge, J. M. (2008) Panel data methods for fractional response variables with an application to test pass rates, Journal of Econometrics, 145, 121–33.

On Industrial Knowledge Bases, Commercial Opportunities and Global Innovation Network Linkages

Our (Sverre J. Herstad, Heidi Wiig Aslesen and my) paper “On industrial knowledge bases, commercial opportunities and global innovation network linkages” publication by Research Policy  is now online available  .

It is commonly argued that we are witnessing a shift from global production networks, driven by the search for markets and lower cost production sites, to global innovation networks (GINs), driven by the search for knowledge. This paper explores how sources of behavioural differentiation derived from the literature on industrial knowledge bases and technological regimes condition the degree of international involvement and influence the likelihood that a truly global network configuration is established by the firm. We find this to be clearly influenced by the nature of knowledge and the cumulativeness of knowledge development, the active use of measures to protect intellectual property, the inherent need to innovate and the opportunity to generate sales from this activity.

Does Offshoring Hurt Domestic Innovation Activities?

I have (together with Bernhard Dachs, Steffen Kinkel, and Oliver Som) contributed a column to the is a policy portal set up by the Centre for Economic Policy Research ( in conjunction with a consortium of national sites. Vox aims to promote research-based policy analysis and commentary by leading scholars. The intended audience is economists in governments, international organisations, academia and the private sector as well as journalists specializing in economics, finance and business. Assistance for the Centre’s work on Vox has been provided by the European Union, through its programme of support for bodies active at the European level in the field of active European citizenship.

Based on our initial research Bernhard and I have teamed up with Steffen Kinkel and Oliver Som, who are behind the inception of the European Manufacturing Survey, that we have used for this project. We have contributed a short summary of our revised research on the effects of offshoring on innovation in the home country.

On the Link Between Urban Location and the Involvement of Knowledge Intensive Business Service Firms in Collaboration Networks

Today we realized that our  (i.e. Sverre J. Herstad‘s and my) paper “On the link between urban location and the involvement of knowledge intensive business services firms in collaboration networks” is published  by Regional Studies. Find the paper here.

The empirical analysis of the paper utilizes unique Norwegian establishment-level innovation data to investigate whether location in urban labour market regions influences the geographical scope of collaborative linkages maintained within and outside the realm of clients. Hence, the paper investigates whether the resources available to KIBS in urban locations influence the scope and breadth of their collaborative involvement. In doing so, it also analyzes the role played by services in linking localized collaboration networks to global knowledge flows, and in contributing to knowledge diffusion across institutional and sectoral divides. The provision of advanced business services is fundamentally a process of knowledge coproduction with clients. Consequently, the geographical scope of client collaboration is closely linked to the geographical scope of market presence, and to the overall emphasis put on innovation by the individual firm. Resources available to KIBS in urban regions may make it easier for them to identify and pursue extra-regional market opportunities, as suggested in the theoretical discussion, but these effects are overshadowed by the stronger external market dependence of KIBS outside these regions.

Partnerships that extend beyond the realm of clients are also closely associated with firm-specific investments in innovation. However, compared to demand side relationships, they are much more selective and subjected to stronger partner search, opportunity cost and human resource constraints. These constraints are mediated by competences and contact points to informal networks provided by individual experts, or those accessed through pre-existing collaborative ties. The result is significantly stronger non-client involvement amongst KIBS in those capital region locations which offer the greatest direct access to human resources and the most diverse local partner base.

[The image shows a suburb in the Oslo capital region – (C) BE]


Open innovation practices and their effect on innovation performance

We all are relieved. A paper that has been accepted for publication about 2.5 years ago, has finally been published. “Open innovation practices and their effect on innovation performance” by Carter Bloch, Sverre Herstad, Els van de Velde and myself has been published last night by International Journal of Innovation and Technology Management (IJITM).

The findings in the paper date back to a project under the Vision EraNet umbrella, which is also reported here.

This paper develops a novel indicator framework for examining open innovation practices and their impact on performance. The analysis, which is based on Community Innovation Survey (CIS) data for Austria, Belgium, Denmark and Norway, yields a number of interesting results. First, we find that open innovation practices have a strong impact on innovation performance. Second, results suggest that broad-based approaches yield the strongest impacts, and that the collective of open innovation strategies appear more important than individual practices. Third, intramural investments are still important for innovative performance, stressing that open innovation is not a substitute for internal knowledge building.

Sverre Herstad and myself, together with others, extended the analysis reported in this paper in a project documented here.

International and national collaboration for innovation – Does the composition of the regional knowledge base matter?

Together with Christina Koller I have recently finalized the draft for a research note about international and national collaboration for innovation. The paper titled “International and national collaboration for innovation – Does the composition of the regional knowledge base matter?” will be presented at the research conference of the Austrian Universities of Applied Sciences.

In the paper we argue that according to the resource-based view what firms do is to combine and to re-combine existing and new knowledge. This is particularly important for their innovation activities. Recently the region as the locus of innovation activity has attracted more attention. In particular considerable focus is put on national and international collaborative involvement of regional innovation activity as collaboration spans regional boundaries to access complementary resources. In this research we focus our attention on the characteristics of the regional knowledge base that affect innovation collaboration.

Using comprehensive EPO patent application data from 1978 to 2009,we analyze the driving factors for all European regions. We find that domestic collaboration across regional boundaries is driven by a lack of innovation potential and by a lack of technological strength. International collaborations are determined by a lack of technological strength as well, but are positively influenced by regional innovation potential.