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Collaboration experience in the supply chain of knowledge and patent development

  • Autori: Alletto, A.; Bruccoleri, M.; Mazzola, E.; Ramanathan, U.
  • Anno di pubblicazione: 2017
  • Tipologia: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)
  • OA Link:


In this paper, we aim at understanding the role of collaboration experience in supply chains of knowledge (SCoK). The SCoK of a company is its supply chain not related to the flow of physical goods but to the flow of R&D commodities. R&D commodities are for example patents, technologies, research services, studies, and projects, and, in high-tech industries, their development and commercialisation are considered as important as real products. To accomplish our aim in this paper, we fulfil the following research objectives: (1) investigate the relationship between the collaboration experience in SCoK and the propensity of the firm to develop new patents; (2) examine how the structural embeddedness of the firm within its SCoK mediates this relationship. We ground our conceptual model on the supply chain, open innovation and social capital literatures and empirically test our hypotheses on a cross-sectional data-set of 208 biotech companies that have signed 612 SCoK agreements in the years 2006–2010. The key findings of this study are: first, accumulating experience in SCoK collaborations facilitates the development of new patents; second, being central and bridging structural holes within the SCoK are two means by which the experience in SCoK collaborations is translated into new patents.