Kitchen Confidential? Knowledge Transfer and Social Norms in Gourmet Cuisine
Posted: 24 May 2011
Date Written: May 24, 2011
In this paper, we explore the conditions for knowhow transfer in gourmet cuisine, an industry characterized by rapid innovation and weak protection of intellectual property (IP). We investigate whether bilateral exchanges are facilitated either by the existence of norms that reduce the risk of misappropriation or by IP strategies that decrease the potential for loss. We disentangle how these different mechanisms interact. Using evidence from a scenario-based field experiment, we demonstrate that norms play a role in governing the use of transferred information. We also explore how norms are maintained in communities.
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