Over the last few years, firms have increasingly tapped into external sources of knowledge through research and development (R&D) collaborations and partnerships to sustain innovation. By doing so, managers are challenged to deal efficiently with the diversity of external sources of knowledge to allow their firms to reap the benefits of innovative activities. By investigating a large-scale sample of R&D-intensive Italian manufacturing firms, this paper examines the extent to which the heterogeneity and the intensity of R&D partnership influence a firms innovative performance. The findings suggest that firms with a greater number of heterogeneous types of partners have greater benefits in terms of innovative performance, particularly when they draw deeply from a limited number of preferred partnership types.

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Keywords Heterogeneity of R&D partnership, intensity of R&D partnership, manufacturing firms, partnership types, R&D collaboration, R&D partnership
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1109/TEM.2011.2125966, hdl.handle.net/1765/101538
Journal IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management
Berchicci, L. (2011). Heterogeneity and intensity of R&D partnership in Italian manufacturing firms. In IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management (Vol. 58, pp. 674–687). doi:10.1109/TEM.2011.2125966