When Micro Shapes the Meso: Learning Networks in a Chilean Wine Cluster
Elisa Giuliani () and
Martin Bell ()
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Martin Bell: SPRU, University of Sussex
No 115, SPRU Working Paper Series from SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit, University of Sussex Business School
Most analyses of the relationship between spatial clustering and the technological learning of firms have emphasised the influence of the former on the latter, and have focused on intra-cluster learning as the driver of innovative performance. This paper reverses those perspectives. It examines the influence of individual firms' absorptive capacities on both the functioning of the intra-cluster knowledge system and its interconnection with extra-cluster knowledge. It applies social network analysis to identify different cognitive roles played by cluster firms and the overall structure of the knowledge system of a wine cluster in Chile. The results show that knowledge is not diffused evenly 'in the air', but flows within a core group of firms characterised by advanced absorptive capacities. Firms' different cognitive roles include some - as in the case of technological gatekeepers - that contribute actively to the acquisition, creation and diffusion of knowledge. Others remain cognitively isolated from the cluster, though in some cases strongly linked to extra-cluster knowledge. Possible implications for policy are noted.
Keywords: clusters; absorptive capacity; knowledge communities; technological gatekeepers (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O33 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 36 pages
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ino, nep-net and nep-tid
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Published in Research Policy, Volume 34, Number 1, 2005, pp.47-68. (New title: The Micro-Determinants of Meso-Level Learning and Innovation: Evidence from a Chilean Wine Cluster)
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:sru:ssewps:115
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