Title: Profiting from external knowledge: the impact of different external knowledge acquisition strategies on innovation performance
Authors: Emiel F.M. Wubben; Maarten Batterink; Christos Kolympiris; Ron G.M. Kemp; Onno S.W.F. Omta
Addresses: Management Studies, Social Sciences Group, Wageningen University, Hollandseweg 1, 6706 KN Wageningen, The Netherlands ' Significant, Thorbeckelaan 91, 3771 ED Barneveld, The Netherlands ' Management Studies, Social Sciences Group, Wageningen University, Hollandseweg 1, 6706 KN Wageningen, The Netherlands ' The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets, The Hague, The Netherlands ' Management Studies, Social Sciences Group, Wageningen University, Hollandseweg 1, 6706 KN Wageningen, The Netherlands
Abstract: Innovation is key to company growth, but hinges on timely access to new knowledge. Individual companies have difficulty pursuing innovation and acquiring the knowledge they need on their own. Companies therefore resort to various governance modes (licensing-in, collaborations, mergers and acquisitions, etc.) that suit the preferred innovation trajectories. We expect governance modes directed at knowledge exploration to generate long-term, radical innovations, and governance modes aimed at knowledge exploitation to generate short-term, incremental innovations. Employing data from two Dutch community innovation surveys, we indeed discovered that companies that license in technology tend to produce more incremental innovations. We also found a strong positive correlation between inter-organisational collaboration and both long-term and short-term innovation. Finally, we concluded that M&As have a major impact on the production of long-term radical innovations.
Keywords: licensing-in; inter-organisational collaboration; mergers and acquisitions; M&A; longitudinal study; knowledge acquisition; innovation performance; technology management; external knowledge; knowledge exploration; knowledge exploration; The Netherlands; radical innovation; incremental innovation.
International Journal of Technology Management, 2015 Vol.69 No.2, pp.139 - 165
Accepted: 17 Oct 2014
Published online: 31 Aug 2015 *