Interorganizational Collaboration and the Locus of Innovation: Networks of Learning in Biotechnology

Powell, Walter W.; Koput, Kenneth W.; Smith-Doerr, Laurel
March 1996
Administrative Science Quarterly;Mar1996, Vol. 41 Issue 1, p116
Academic Journal
We argue in this paper that when the knowledge base of an industry is both complex and expanding and the sources of expertise are widely dispersed, the locus of innovation will be found in networks of learning, rather than in individual firms. The large-scale reliance on interorganizational collaborations in the biotechnology industry reflects a fundamental and pervasive concern with access to knowledge. We develop a network approach to organizational learning and derive firm-level, longitudinal hypotheses that link research and development alliances, experience with managing interfirm relationships, network position, rates of growth, and portfolios of collaborative activities. We test these hypotheses on a sample of dedicated biotechnology firms in the years 1990-1994. Results from pooled, within-firm, time series analyses support a learning view and have broad implications for future theoretical and empirical research on organizational networks and strategic alliances.


Related Articles

  • Social Structure and Alliance Formation Patterns: A Longitudinal Analysis. Gulati, Ranjay // Administrative Science Quarterly;Dec95, Vol. 40 Issue 4, p619 

    This study explores how social structure affects interfirm alliance formation patterns. It proposes that the social context emerging from prior alliances and considerations of strategic interdependence influence partnership decisions between firms. This social network facilitates new alliances...

  • THE EFFECT OF GENERAL AND PARTNER-SPECIFIC ALLIANCE EXPERIENCE ON JOINT R&D PROJECT PERFORMANCE. Ha Hoang; Rothaermel, Frank T. // Academy of Management Journal;Apr2005, Vol. 48 Issue 2, p332 

    Drawing on the organizational learning literature, we posited that both general, diverse-partner experience and partner-specific experience contribute to alliance performance, but at a declining rate. We tested hypotheses in unique data on the objective performance of projects between large...

  • Cluster of Time Series. Maharaj, E.A. // Journal of Classification;2000, Vol. 17 Issue 2, p297 

    This paper presents a test of hypotheses to compare two stationary time seriesas well as an accompanying classification procedure that uses this test ofhypotheses to cluster stationary time series. Our hypotheses testingprocedure, which unlinke the existing tests, does not require the time...

  • Collaboration within and between firms: Network structures, decision processes, and their impact on alliance performance. Walter, Jorge // University of St. Gallen, Business Dissertations;2005, p1 

    This dissertation is built on the foundation of information processing theory, which argues that a fit between information processing requirements facing an organization and its information processing capacity determines organizational performance (cf., Galbraith, 1973; Inkpen, 1998; Tushman &...

  • Scotland revs up life sciences engine. Mirasol, Feliza // Chemical Market Reporter;4/24/2006, Vol. 269 Issue 16, p22 

    The article reports on the establishment of Life Sciences Scotland which aims to improve the biotechnology industry in the area. The alliance is planning to elevate its resources in research and innovation. The country's research and development community boasts a tradition of innovation,...

  • Analysis Of Open Innovation From The Perspective Of Technology Alliance. Tao Li; Liu Yang // Applied Mechanics & Materials;2014, Vol. 631-632, p1334 

    Technology alliance and open innovation play a pivotal role in the process of corporate R&D. Researching open innovation always considers technology alliance as an organizational model to implement open innovation, but they rarely analyze open innovation from the perspective of technology...

  • LEARNING WHILE INNOVATING. Van De Ven, Andrew H.; Polley, Douglas // Organization Science;Feb92, Vol. 3 Issue 1, p92 

    This paper examines processes of trial-and-error learning during the development of a technological innovation by an interorganizational joint venture created expressly for developing and commercializing products from the new technology. We develop a model of adaptive learning, which...

  • Information Sharing to Transformation: Antecedents of Collaborative Networked Learning in Manufacturing. Wee Hock Quik; Nevan Wright // World Academy of Science, Engineering & Technology;2012, Issue 68, p1477 

    Collaborative networked learning (hereafter CNL) was first proposed by Charles Findley in his work "Collaborative networked learning: online facilitation and software support" as part of instructional learning for the future of the knowledge worker. His premise was that through electronic...

  • Transforming Informal Learning Into a Competitive Advantage. Roy, Julie Norquist // T+D;Oct2010, Vol. 64 Issue 10, p23 

    The article focuses on the idea that businesses can gain a competitive advantage via informal and collaborative learning in an organization. Strategic planning includes using social media such as blogs to build a business network where employees can share knowledge and managers have an...


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics