Knowledge-Intensive Entrepreneurship in Low-Tech Industries
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Knowledge-Intensive Entrepreneurship in Low-Tech Industries

Edited by Hartmut Hirsch-Kreinsen and Isabel Schwinge

This book contributes to the discussion about the relevance of knowledge-intensive entrepreneurship for industrial innovation in the context of traditional low-technology industries.
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Chapter 6: High-growth LMT firms and the evolution of the Russian economy

Andrei Yudanov


Joseph Schumpeter was among the first to distinguish the innovative activity of an entrepreneur from technological innovations-and much more so from inventions. He stated that the main task of the entrepreneur is to carry out new combinations which might be not just technological but also marketing-oriented (new markets for existing goods) or managerial (new forms of industrial organization) in nature (Schumpeter, 1951: 131-5). At the time of writing, the best-known reference work about tracking innovative processes with such a broad understanding is the Oslo Manual: Guidelines for Collecting and Interpreting Innovation Data (OECD, 2005a; see also the theoretical concept of KIE: Malerba, 2010). In practice, however, innovations are often considered almost exclusively to consist in the development of new technologies. Moreover, the degree of innovativeness of a firm or a branch tends to be reduced to easily measurable aspects of their technological activity: the level of R & D expenditures, the number of research personnel, or the number of registered patents. The emergence of concrete quantitative recommendations of the OECD (1996; 2002; 2005b) which divides various industries of the economy into categories of 'high-tech', 'medium-high-tech', 'medium-low-tech', or 'low-tech', derived as the ratio of R & D expenditures to the output value of a branch, could be considered as the logical conclusion of this tendency. Nevertheless, the R & D-oriented approach never found substantial support in at least two spheres of research, specifically, low-tech industries and high-growth firms.

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