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Evolution and Economic Complexity

Edited by J. Stanley Metcalfe and John Foster

Dedicated to the goal of furthering evolutionary economic analysis, this book provides a coherent scientific approach to deal with the real world of continual change in the economic system. Expansive in its scope, this book ranges from abstract discussions of ontology, analysis and theory to more practical discussions on how we can operationalize notions such as ‘capabilities’ from what we understand as ‘knowledge’. Simulation techniques and empirical case studies are also used.
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Chapter 8: Technological and Economic Mobility in Large German Manufacturing Firms

Uwe Cantner and Jens J. Krüger


8. Technological and economic mobility in large German manufacturing firms Uwe Cantner and Jens J. Krüger1 INTRODUCTION The analyses reported in this chapter refer to the relationship between firm performance on the one hand and firm and industry evolution on the other. The empirical literature on this so-called industrial dynamics starts its analyses from a number of stylized facts related to structure and structural change (see Dosi et al. 1997). Among those structural factors, of considerable importance is the heterogeneity or asymmetry of firms which suggests a strongly idiosyncratic element in the technological performance of firms on the one hand and their economic performance on the other. The dynamics and evolution of an industry is then viewed as the result of these different heterogeneities over time. There is some confusion in the recent literature on industrial dynamics about the amount of persistence or variability of certain variables like market shares or productivity measures over time. On the one hand, empirical studies such as those of Geroski and Toker (1996) on market shares or Jensen and McGuckin (1997) on relative labour productivity found considerable persistence of those measures. On the other hand, studies by Davies and Geroski (1997) or Mazzucato and Semmler (1999) concluded that market shares are rather unstable. Using patent data as measures of innovative activity in a statistical duration analysis, Geroski et al. (1997) conclude that very few firms innovate persistently over longer periods of time. The approach taken by Cefis and Orsenigo (2001) is...

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