Title: Path Dependency and Recombinant Exploration: How Established Firms Can Outperform in the Creation of Technological Breakthroughs
Other Titles: Path Dependency, Recombinant Exploration and the Discovery of Technological Breakthroughs
Authors: Arts, Sam
Issue Date: 2013
Conference: Strategic Management Society Special Conference on Enabling Big Bang Innovations location:Geneva, Switzerland date:20-23 March 2013
Abstract: How can established companies increase their chances at inventing technological breakthroughs? Prior R&D might lead to path dependency and competency traps causing a company to be locked out in case the technology frontier shifts to a new area. Prior literature has advised companies to move beyond areas of established competence by investing R&D in or externally sourcing prior art from unfamiliar and emerging technology fields. In this paper, we take a complementary perspective and study if and how continuity with established technological capabilities can facilitate companies to invent technological breakthroughs in the future. We study how brokering disconnected but very familiar technological components or subfields provides established companies the opportunity to develop technological breakthroughs while redeploying knowledge and capabilities accumulated from prior R&D.
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IMa
Appears in Collections:Department of International Business, Strategy and Economics (IBSE), Campus Carolus Antwerp
Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB) - miscellaneous

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