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Implementing an R&D Strategy without Prior R&D-Experience Recruitment as a Source of R&D-related Routines and Capabilities?

Lina Ahlin, Martin Andersson () and Torben Schubert ()
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Torben Schubert : CIRCLE, Lund University and Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI), Postal: CIRCLE, Lund University, PO Box 117, SE-22100 Lund, Sweden

No 2013/3, Papers in Innovation Studies from Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy

Abstract: Evolutionary economic theorizing and related approaches explain persistent heterogeneity in R&D activities between firms with persistent inter-firm differences in R&D-related routines and capabilities. Emphasizing the importance experiential learning leading to pathdependence of R&D strategies, this raises the question of how firms can organize strategy transitions towards continuous R&D, in particular, if they had not been R&D active before. Building on a growing literature trying to identify the micro-foundations of organizational routines and capabilities, we argue that recruitment of experienced R&D workers is an important means by which firms without prior internal R&D experience can build routines and capabilities needed to implement and sustain an R&D strategy shift. We test our predictions using rich matched employer-employee panel data for Sweden, which allows for the identification of firms that implement a strategy of continuous R&D activities without prior R&D experience. Our findings confirm recruitment of experienced R&D workers as an important mechanism by which firms prepare and sustain a transition towards persistent R&D.

Keywords: routines; capabilities; R&D strategy; micro-foundations; recruitment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D22 J24 J63 O31 O32 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 28 pages
Date: 2013-05-02
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cse, nep-ino and nep-sbm
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:hhs:lucirc:2013_003

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