Communities of innovation: Three essays on new knowledge development
This dissertation explores the performance implications of "knowledge communities," refining a methodology for identifying these communities, and developing a theoretical framework to further understand this aspect of innovation and new knowledge creation. Research on innovation and performance often takes either firms or research institutions as the primary unit of analysis or contrasts firms to traditional communities (Chen, McCain, White, & Lin, 2002; Gittelman, 2003; Hargens, 2000a; Podolny & Stuart, 1995). In our study of innovation and performance we take informal inter-organizational communities of knowledge creators as our unit of analysis and contrast these communities to firms to understand how in this context innovation and performance happen and can be best promoted. In the first paper we examine knowledge communities from the bottom up---how and why do individual researchers join and collaborate within such communities. Using a zero-inflated negative binomial model, we find that these communities can confer significant advantages to researchers. We study how researchers' positions within and between knowledge communities can influence the impact of their work. In the second paper we look at knowledge communities themselves in order to try to understand why they experience differential success. We use a GLS approach to examine how knowledge communities build on prior knowledge and how they use rhetoric in terms of flexibility, uniqueness and cohesiveness. Knowledge communities, we argue, are a kind of inter-organizational organizational form that can have sustained and meaningful characteristics for performance but has been largely overlooked by the strategic and organizational literature. In our last essay we use qualitative and quantitative methods to explore potential antecedents to knowledge communities---research fronts. By looking at the highly cited "hot" areas of science and seeing whether they maximize growth in size or impact, we are able to develop some insights into how science evolves and changes both in structure and content.
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|Authors:||Upham, Samuel Phineas|
|Type of publication:||Other|
Dissertations available from ProQuest
Persistent link: https://www.econbiz.de/10009438857
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