Managing where you are: agglomeration economies, managerial industry experience and innovation in South-East Asia

Joris Knoben*, Daniel Speldekamp, Harm Hulshof

*Corresponding author for this work

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    Abstract

    It is well-established that firms leverage both internal and external resources for their innovation activities. Even though the role of agglomeration economies in shaping the external resources available to firms has been particularly well-studied it is still unclear whether it is diversity or specialisation within agglomerations that drives firm innovativeness. We suggest that both do but that their relations with firm innovativeness are moderated by managerial industry experience. Using data from four South-East Asian economies we find that managers with more industry experience are better able to make the most of where they are, leveraging the opportunities afforded by their geographic environment. This finding is most pronounced in rural areas where firms with inexperienced managers almost never innovate, whereas half of the firms with experienced managers do. This suggests that future agglomeration research should be attentive to firm-level idiosyncrasies.

    Original languageEnglish
    Number of pages25
    JournalIndustry and Innovation
    DOIs
    Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18-Sep-2022

    Keywords

    • Innovation
    • managerial experience
    • industry experience
    • emerging markets
    • agglomeration economies
    • RESEARCH-AND-DEVELOPMENT
    • FIRM PERFORMANCE
    • EMERGING MARKETS
    • 2 FACES
    • KNOWLEDGE
    • CLUSTERS
    • GEOGRAPHY
    • SPECIALIZATION
    • LOCATION
    • CONTEXT

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