The Bumpy Road of Technology Partnerships: Understanding Causes and Consequences of Partnership Mal-Functioning

43 Pages Posted: 24 May 2011 Last revised: 10 Jun 2011

See all articles by Boris Lokshin

Boris Lokshin

Maastricht University, School of Business and Economics

John Hagedoorn

Maastricht University, School of Business and Economics

Wilko H. Letterie

Maastricht School of Business and Economics; Maastricht University

Date Written: May 16, 2011

Abstract

Research on technological partnerships has traditionally sought explanation of their high failure rates in partner characteristics and relationship features. This study introduces the notion of a ‘bumpy road’ in technology partnerships which refers to undesired outcomes such as ‘partnership mal-functioning’ and ‘instability’ to the degree to which innovation activities are hampered. We explain how firm-level strategies can reduce the probability of a ‘bumpy road’ in partnerships. We also assess the impact of this ‘bumpy road’ on innovative performance. We find that firms that excel in diversification of external activities (in terms of different types of partners) perform best. Moreover, a persistent product oriented innovation strategy geared at developing new products, new markets, or higher product quality will yield more stable partnership outcomes. Our results confirm that engagement in partnerships is beneficial for innovative performance. However, firms that experienced a ‘bumpy road’ in their technological partnerships have to pay a price in terms of a negative effect on their innovative performance.

Keywords: R&D collaboration, technological performance, innovation, alliance failure

JEL Classification: D24, O31, O32

Suggested Citation

Lokshin, Boris and Hagedoorn, John and Letterie, Wilko H., The Bumpy Road of Technology Partnerships: Understanding Causes and Consequences of Partnership Mal-Functioning (May 16, 2011). Research Policy, Vol. 40, No. 2, 2011. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1843171

Boris Lokshin (Contact Author)

Maastricht University, School of Business and Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, 6200 MD
Netherlands
+31 43 388 3697 (Phone)
+31 43 325 4893 (Fax)

John Hagedoorn

Maastricht University, School of Business and Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, 6200 MD
Netherlands

Wilko H. Letterie

Maastricht School of Business and Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, 6200 MD
Netherlands
31-43-3883645 (Phone)
31-43-3213137 (Fax)

Maastricht University

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, 6200MD
Netherlands

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