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Impact on firms of the use of knowledge providers: a systematic review of the literature

Vivas-Augier, Carlos and Barge-Gil, Andrés (2012): Impact on firms of the use of knowledge providers: a systematic review of the literature.

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Abstract

This study summarizes the main conclusions from a systematic review of the empirical literature regarding the impact on firms of the use of knowledge providers, including universities, technology institutes or knowledge intensive business firms. We use a criteria to classify the literature according to the research question addressed: (i) Which firms use knowledge providers?; (ii) Do firms using them achieve better results?; (iii) Which firms benefit more from using knowledge providers? Stylized facts are that larger, more R&D intensive and high tech firms are more likely to use knowledge providers and that use of knowledge providers is associated to firms higher technical results. Less attention has been paid to the third question so that no stylized facts can be developed on it. Three important recommendations for future research emerge. First, to pay more attention to methodological issues, such as sample selection and endogeneity, which may potentially bias the results. Second, to develop comparative analysis of the differential features of different knowledge providers. Third, to take depth and breadth of collaborations into account.

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