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Basic research, applied research and innovation in the semiconductor and pharmaceutical industries

Author: Kwanghui Lim; Sloan School of Management.
Publisher: ©2000.
Dissertation: Ph. D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sloan School of Management 2000
Edition/Format:   Thesis/dissertation : Thesis/dissertation : Manuscript   Archival Material : English
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
This thesis comprises three essays on the relationships among basic research, applied research, and innovation. Earlier research emphasized that absorbing external knowledge requires effort and investment (Cohen and Levinthal, 1989; 1990). This thesis explores various mechanisms through which absorptive capacity is developed, including a firm's R&D, its connectedness to the external scientific community, the  Read more...
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Details

Material Type: Thesis/dissertation, Manuscript, Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Archival Material, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Kwanghui Lim; Sloan School of Management.
OCLC Number: 48251891
Description: 177 pages : illustrations ; 29 cm
Responsibility: by Kwanghui Lim.

Abstract:

This thesis comprises three essays on the relationships among basic research, applied research, and innovation. Earlier research emphasized that absorbing external knowledge requires effort and investment (Cohen and Levinthal, 1989; 1990). This thesis explores various mechanisms through which absorptive capacity is developed, including a firm's R&D, its connectedness to the external scientific community, the provision of a science-oriented research environment, and investment in basic research. The chief contribution of this dissertation is to document the many ways in which firms develop absorptive capacity, and how absorptive capacity varies across industry, stage of technology development, and scientific area. The first essay explores how firms develop different kinds of absorptive capacity. A firm's absorptive capacity depends upon internal R&D and its connectedness to universities, other firms and R&D consortia. R&D is effective for absorbing disciplinary knowledge; alternative mechanisms are useful for domain-specific knowledge. A science-oriented research environment is not necessary, as long as the firm remains connected through other means. To illustrate, I trace knowledge spillovers of copper interconnect technology for semiconductors. The second essay examines the concentration of basic and applied research relative to innovation. In the semiconductor industry, basic research is surprisingly concentrated relative to innovation. Since spillovers are prevalent in this industry, I conclude that many semiconductor firms capture spillovers without performing much basic research. In the pharmaceutical industry, basic research and innovation have similar concentrations. In both industries, applied research is not concentrated relative to innovation.

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