liu.seSearch for publications in DiVA
Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • oxford
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Is one path enough? Multiple paths and path interaction as an extension of path dependency theory
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Project Innovations and Entrepreneurship. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology. (KITE)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1952-902X
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Project Innovations and Entrepreneurship. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
2014 (English)In: Industrial and Corporate Change, ISSN 0960-6491, E-ISSN 1464-3650, Vol. 23, no 5, 1261-1297 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

To explain the development of multi-technology companies and industries where several alternative technologies co-exist and interact over long periods, this article suggests an extension of path dependency theory by providing a conceptualization of the path notion that incorporates the theoretical possibility of multiple paths and path interaction. The conceptualization is applied to a patent study of three leading companies in the lighting industry: General Electric, Osram/Siemens, and Philips. The study shows technology development patterns that are characterized by strong persistence, both within each path and across the whole technology field. These results demonstrate that multiple technological paths can co-exist in companies and industries, characterized by simultaneous long-term presence of several technologies. In such cases, path interaction takes place both between co-existing paths and when new, radically different paths are created. Although further studies are needed to identify the underlying self-reinforcing mechanisms, there is a clear indication that technological path dependency is not restricted to unitary progression patterns, as implied by previous conceptualizations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Oxford University Press, 2014. Vol. 23, no 5, 1261-1297 p.
National Category
Economics and Business Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-102614DOI: 10.1093/icc/dtt040ISI: 000343321100005OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-102614DiVA: diva2:679999
Available from: 2013-12-17 Created: 2013-12-17 Last updated: 2017-12-06
In thesis
1. Technology Dynamics in Multi-Technology Industries: Selection and Variety Creation through the Lens of Path Dependency and Path Generation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Technology Dynamics in Multi-Technology Industries: Selection and Variety Creation through the Lens of Path Dependency and Path Generation
2014 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis studies technological development in multi-technology industries, or industries characterized by co-existence of several technological alternatives that are used in the same or largely overlapping applications and markets. Although a lot of industries can be considered as multi-technological, they are understudied in the current research. Therefore, thesis purpose is to explain the processes of variety creation and selection in such industries. These two processes, considered in evolutionary economics literature as central for understanding technology dynamics, have specific characteristics in multi-technology industries and require a separate conceptualization.

As theoretical tools to consider the processes of selection and variety creation, the concepts of path dependency and path generation are chosen, respectively. To account for the specifics of the selection process, the framework of multiple paths and path interaction is suggested. This framework acknowledges the existence of persistence and self-reinforcing mechanisms at the level of narrowly defined technologies as well as at the overall industry level. The specifics of the process of variety creation are found to be defined by the influence from the process of selection. Therefore, variety creation is studied by analyzing how path dependency affects path generation. Three types of such influence are suggested: negative, neutral and positive.

Using the suggested concepts, the empirical case of the multi-technology lighting industry is considered with the help of patents analysis as well as the study of secondary data sources. As a result, several specific characteristics of the processes of selection and variety creation are revealed and explained.

The process of selection is found to be present at two levels: the level of narrowly defined technologies and the overall industry level. While the former level is well in line with traditional conceptualizations of selection mechanisms, it is the latter one that represents the specifics of multi-technology industries. The overall industry-level selection is based on partial overlaps between technologies and helps to explain why selection is not fully based on technology competition, but allows for positive interaction between alternatives.

For the process of variety creation, it is found to be influenced by the process of selection in three different ways. First, negative influence is found in the form of barriers imposed on the process of new technology development. Second, neutral influence is observed in the way how the established technology shaped some of the characteristics of the new ones. This type of influence explains the cumulative nature of variety creation in multi-technology industries. Third, positive influence is seen in the form of opportunities provided for new technology development, which also explains the on-going and industry-internal character of variety creation.

In sum, both processes are found to be different from traditional conceptualizations, and the interplay between them helps to sustain the multi-technological character of such industries.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2014. 49 p.
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Thesis, ISSN 0280-7971 ; 1674
National Category
Economics and Business Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-108885 (URN)978-91-7519-258-1 (ISBN)
Presentation
2014-09-09, Campus Valla, Linköpings universitet, Linköping, 13:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2014-07-10 Created: 2014-07-10 Last updated: 2014-10-08Bibliographically approved
2. Enabled by the past: understanding endogenous innovation in mature industries
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Enabled by the past: understanding endogenous innovation in mature industries
2017 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Mature industries have played and still play a crucial role in national and world economies. To survive and retain competitiveness, they need to innovate, as innovation is the driver of economics growth and industrial transformation. However, existing research does not provide sufficient explanation of how innovation in mature industries can be enabled based on resources and internal development logic of those industries, i.e. endogenously. Some previous studies focused on incremental innovation patterns, which led to an underestimation of innovation potential of mature industries. Other studies acknowledged a high innovation potential of mature industries, but failed to explain how, through what mechanisms, industry-endogenous logic can bring about major innovations.

Therefore, the purpose of this thesis is to systematically address, explain and conceptualize endogenous industry- innovation and its driving mechanisms in mature industries. To achieve this purpose, three main issues are addressed. First, the thesis investigates and conceptualizes the notion of industry endogenous innovation mechanisms based on the path dependency theory. Second, the thesis addresses strategic choices and actions by established companies that are rooted in the industry endogenous mechanisms and result in highly innovative outcomes. Third, the thesis systematically analyses different aspects of radicalness of innovations resulting from industry endogenous mechanisms.

The thesis represents a qualitative, embedded case study with two main industry cases, i.e. the global lighting industry and the Swedish pulp and paper industry. The lighting industry and its sub-cases in the form of specific lighting technologies have been studied via the analysis of patents of leading lighting manufacturers, archival and secondary data sources as well as interviews with different types of actors in the industry. The pulp and paper industry and its sub-cases in the form of innovation initiatives have been studied with the help of interviews with leading manufacturers and research institutes, as well the analysis of annual reports and secondary data sources. The outcomes of the study are presented in the form of the thesis cover paper and five appended papers.

The results show that innovations of any magnitude can be endogenously developed in mature industries. At the industry level, endogenous innovation is driven by innovation mechanisms that can be conceptualized as reactive sequences and self-reinforcing mechanisms. At the level of individual companies, the exploitation strategy corresponds to the logic of endogenous innovation mechanisms by enabling highly innovative outcomes and building on a wide range of resources available in the industry. The endogenous character of innovation mechanisms imposes certain limitations on the radicalness of the outcomes in the form of trade-offs in terms of how many and what particular aspects can be radically new at once.

With these results, the thesis contributes to a more balanced overall understanding of innovation potential of mature industries and allows shifting the focus of discussion from whether mature industries can develop radical innovation to when and under what conditions they can succeed in this process. The results of the thesis also suggest several recommendations for managers in established companies with regard to how they can they can take advantage of industry endogenous innovation mechanisms.

Abstract [sv]

Mogna branscher har traditionellt sett spelat och spelar fortfarande en viktig roll för såväl nationella ekonomier som för världsekonomin. För att överleva och behålla sin konkurrenskraft behöver mogna branscher fortsätta vara innovativa, eftersom innovation driver ekonomisk tillväxt. Även för enskilda, etablerade företag i sådana branscher är innovation centralt – de företag som inte lyckas med innovation riskerar att förlora i konkurrensen och bli ersatta av andra.

Det finns emellertid än så länge inte någon bra förklaring till hur innovation i mogna branscher kan möjliggöras endogent, d v s baserat på befintliga resurser och branschens interna utvecklingslogik. Tidigare studier har antingen tenderat att underskatta innovationspotentialen i mogna branscher eller misslyckats med att visa hur – d v s genom vilka mekanismer – branschens egen logik kan möjliggöra radikala innovationer.

Syftet med denna avhandling är att förklara och konceptualisera endogena innovation och dess drivmekanismer i mogna branscher. För att uppnå detta syfte undersöker avhandlingen endogena innovationsprocesser på såväl bransch- som företagsnivå samt analyserar i vilken utsträckning olika aspekter av radikala innovationer möjliggörs av endogena mekanismer. Avhandlingen är baserad på kvalitativa fallstudier av två branscher. Den första branschen är den globala belysningsindustrin, där olika belysningstekniker har studerats via analyser av patent, sekundära datakällor samt intervjuer med olika typer av aktörer i branschen. Den andra branschen är svensk pappersmassaindustri, där ett antal olika innovationsinitiativ har studerats framförallt med hjälp av intervjuer med ledande företag och forskningsinstitut.

Avhandlingen består av en kappa och fem bifogade artiklar. Resultaten visar att alla typer av innovationer, inklusive radikala innovationer, kan utvecklas endogent i mogna branscher. På industrinivån drivs denna utveckling av innovationsmekanismer i form av reaktiva sekvenser och självförstärkande mekanismer. På företagsnivån kan processen drivas av en innovationsstrategi som bygger på exploatering av befintliga resurser. Trots att alla aspekter av radikala innovationer kan utvecklas endogent, medför endogena mekanismer emellertid vissa begränsningar i form av kritiska avvägningar när det gäller hur många och vilka aspekter som kan hållas radikala samtidigt.

Med dessa resultat bidrar avhandlingen till en mer balanserad, övergripande förståelse för innovationspotentialen i mogna branscher och medger ett skifte av fokus i vetenskapliga diskussioner från frågan om mogna branscher kan utveckla radikala innovationer till när och under vilka villkor de kan lyckas med denna process. I avhandlingen ges även rekommendationer för ledare i etablerade företag med avseende på hur de kan dra nytta av branschens endogena innovationsmekanismer.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2017. 94 p.
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Dissertations, ISSN 0345-7524 ; 1838
Keyword
mature industry, endogenous innovation, innovation mechanisms, exploitation, radical innovation, lighting industry, pulp and paper industry
National Category
Economic Geography Business Administration Economic History Social Sciences Interdisciplinary Work Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-136099 (URN)10.3384/diss.diva-136099 (DOI)9789176855614 (ISBN)
Public defence
2017-06-16, ACAS, A-huset, Campus Valla, Linköping, 13:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2017-03-27 Created: 2017-03-27 Last updated: 2017-04-19Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

fulltext(1146 kB)332 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 1146 kBChecksum SHA-512
84cb9a3cbb1263b42b221cb44aa8e27507985d6c8a616eaa4ce0fe9b3910da57deb36214fa546493294420d5b47085c33338a9872759b62d8b6da5e1f2ffc921
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Other links

Publisher's full text

Authority records BETA

Bergek, AnnaOnufrey, Ksenia

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Bergek, AnnaOnufrey, Ksenia
By organisation
Project Innovations and EntrepreneurshipThe Institute of Technology
In the same journal
Industrial and Corporate Change
Economics and BusinessOther Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 332 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

doi
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

doi
urn-nbn
Total: 435 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • oxford
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf