The Role of Alliance Network Redundancy in the Creation of Core and Non-Core Technologies

30 Pages Posted: 19 Jan 2009

See all articles by Wim Vanhaverbeke

Wim Vanhaverbeke

Hasselt University; University of Surrey; ESADE Business School

Victor A. Gilsing

Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) - Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies (ECIS); Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Rotterdam School of Management (RSM); Ministerie van Economische Zaken

Bonnie E. Beerkens

Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE)

Geert Duysters

Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) - Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies (ECIS); University of Maastricht

Abstract

This paper studies the effect of a focal firm, and its partners' local alliance actions, on the creation of technological innovations by the former. More specifically, we study how two types of redundancy in a focal firm's ego network affect its ability to create new technologies in its technology core areas (exploitation) and/or non-core areas (exploration). We analyse this empirically in three different industry settings: chemicals, motor vehicles, and pharmaceuticals. One of our key findings is that individual firms can indeed boost both types of innovative output by shaping the degree of redundancy in their local alliance network, but that the way in which this should be done differs between the creation of core and non-core technologies. Next, we find that it is very useful to unpack the rather abstract notion of redundancy into more specific types of redundancy in ego networks. Overall, these findings reflect an action-oriented view on the role of individual firms in collaborative networks, which may complement the dominant view in the alliance literature emphasizing the role of the overall network structure and firms' network position within it.

Suggested Citation

Vanhaverbeke, Wim and Gilsing, Victor A. and Beerkens, Bonnie E. and Duysters, Geert, The Role of Alliance Network Redundancy in the Creation of Core and Non-Core Technologies. Journal of Management Studies, Vol. 46, Issue 2, pp. 215-244, March 2009, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1330207 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6486.2008.00801.x

Wim Vanhaverbeke

Hasselt University ( email )

Agoralaan - building D
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HOME PAGE: http://wimvanhaverbeke.be

University of Surrey ( email )

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United Kingdom
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ESADE Business School

Av. de Pedralbes, 60-62
Barcelona, 08034
Spain

Victor A. Gilsing

Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) - Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies (ECIS) ( email )

P.O. Box 513
NL-5600 MB Eindhoven
Netherlands
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Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Rotterdam School of Management (RSM) ( email )

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3000 DR Rotterdam, 3000 DR
Netherlands
+31 10 4081945, 4081980 (Phone)
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HOME PAGE: http://web.eur.nl/fbk/dep/dep2/Staff/people/vgilsing

Ministerie van Economische Zaken ( email )

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Den Haag, 2594 AV
Netherlands
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+31 70 379 7788 (Fax)

Bonnie E. Beerkens

Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) ( email )

PO Box 513
Eindhoven, 5600 MB
Netherlands

Geert Duysters

Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) - Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies (ECIS) ( email )

Box 513
NL-5600 MB Eindhoven
Netherlands
+31 40 247 4646 (Fax)

University of Maastricht

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Maastricht, 6200MD
Netherlands

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