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Cristiano Antonelli and Claudio Fassio

This chapter investigates the heterogeneity of the sources of external knowledge and identifies their differentiated effects on process and product innovations. Upstream vertical sources of external knowledge from suppliers exert a strong and positive role on the introduction of process innovations, while horizontal and downstream vertical sources stemming from competitors and customers respectively have stronger effects on the introduction of product innovations. The evidence supports the hypothesis that matching of sources of external knowledge and types of innovation is necessary to implement successful innovation strategies.