External knowledge sourcing and innovation performance: the role of managerial practices

19/01/2012 to 21/01/2012
DRUID Academy 2012
In this paper, we argue that the ability of a firm to transform external knowledge into
commercial success goes beyond the firms’ technological capabilities. Thus, we underscore the
role played by managerial practices (related with knowledge sharing, formalization and
incentives) in the leveraging and utilization of external knowledge. We further consider that
the effectiveness of external knowledge exploitation can be contingent on the types of
external sources (scientific and industrial partners) and on the degree of novelty in innovations
(imitative and new-to-the-market innovations). The research draws on survey data from the
Spanish Ceramic Tile Industry and the main results suggest that firms adopting knowledge
sharing mechanisms are more likely to attain better results in exploiting external scientific
knowledge. On the contrary, formalization-based mechanisms tend to exert a detrimental
effect on the exploitation of external scientific knowledge. Knowledge incentives are non
significant in the case of scientific agents and negative for industrial agents.
University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
Ana García Granero, Jaider Vega-Jurado