A micro-perspective of regional knowledge specialization: Are younger firms more likely to break through path dependence for regions?

Authors: Jingyuan Zeng*, School of Geography and Planning, Sun Yat-sen University, Ye Liu, School of Geography and Planning, Sun Yat-sen University
Topics: Economic Geography, China
Keywords: Regional knowledge specialization, path dependence, knowledge relatedness, micro-foundation, firm life cycle, transitional economy
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Hampton Room, Omni, East
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


This study links the path-dependent nature of regional knowledge specialization to the micro-dynamics of firms – especially focusing on their path-breaking initiatives across different life cycle stages. To further embed the perceived theoretical progress in the realm of knowledge evolution into the context of developing countries, we take China as the study area – a typical transitional economy with a vast diversity of regions that share both the characters of an early-stage economy and a well-developed one. In doing so, this paper uncovers that the key to de-lock regions from path-dependence ultimately lies in the innovative intensity of new establishments. As firms reach more mature stages, they are less likely to depart from their core technological competences, inducing a higher degree of path-dependence in regional knowledge specialization.

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