Title: User knowledge in innovation in high technologies: an empirical analysis of semiconductors

Authors: Pamela Adams; Roberto Fontana; Franco Malerba

Addresses: Franklin College Switzerland, via Ponte Tresa 29, 6924 Sorengo (Lugano), Switzerland. ' University of Pavia, via Ferrata 1, 27100 Pavia, Italy. ' Bocconi University and KITeS, via Roentgen 2, 20136 Milano, Italy

Abstract: As the knowledge boundaries between producer and user firms shift, so do the loci of innovative activity. This study focuses on semiconductors as a case of a high technology industry in which application-specific knowledge became increasingly important in research and design and semiconductor devices were increasingly customised to meet the needs of diverse user markets. The study consists of an empirical analysis of firm-level patent data over two decades. The findings show that user companies innovated extensively and patented their innovations in semiconductors in the two decades between 1984 and 2003. The findings also reveal that major differences existed in the patenting behaviour of various categories of user firms.

Keywords: technology management; user innovation; patents; semiconductors; high technology; user knowledge; high tech industries; research and development; R&D.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTM.2012.046619

International Journal of Technology Management, 2012 Vol.58 No.3/4, pp.284 - 299

Published online: 06 Apr 2013 *

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