Industrial organization, Knowledge transfer
Scholars dating back to the early 1900s have been interested in the idea that organizations benefit from locating in close proximity to other similar organizations (Marshall, 1920). Largely, this research suggests that economies of agglomeration accrue to clustered organizations which create performance advantages when compared to more isolated organizations. Recently, agglomeration theory researchers have focused on high technology clusters where the primary benefit of collocation is argued to be access to knowledge spillovers from local organizations. This dissertation argues that in order to access local knowledge, firms must be active participants in the local research community. Furthermore, in clusters where inventive activity, measured using patent data, is highly concentrated in one or a few organizations, firms derive less benefit from their participation in local research. Clustering does not come without a price, however. Membership in local research networks, which initially provides an advantage for clustered organizations, ultimately drives a convergence of inventions in the cluster. That is, networks of organizations in clusters channel institutional pressures which ensure that firms' inventions come to resemble the inventions of other organizations in the cluster, over time.
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Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
College of Business Administration
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)
Vestal, Alex, "Geographic Clusters and Firm Innovation" (2011). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 6643.