Knowledge Diffusion and Industry Growth: The Case of Japan’s Early Cotton Spinning Industry

41 Pages Posted: 11 Jun 2015

See all articles by Serguey Braguinsky

Serguey Braguinsky

Carnegie Mellon University - Department of Social and Decision Sciences

Date Written: June 10, 2015

Abstract

The diffusion of technological knowledge is key to industry growth. But not all knowledge is created equal. I use a nanoeconomic approach to examine knowledge-diffusion based growth in the Meiji-era Japanese cotton spinning industry, which enjoyed remarkable success after a decade of initial failure. By tracing sources of technological knowledge to individual engineers, I find that successful technology diffusion required the right kind of human capital embodying and transmitting knowledge, and a competitive environment that rewarded talent while weeding out incompetence.

Keywords: Innovation, knowledge diffusion, industry growth, Japan, cotton spinning industry

JEL Classification: O33, O14

Suggested Citation

Braguinsky, Serguey, Knowledge Diffusion and Industry Growth: The Case of Japan’s Early Cotton Spinning Industry (June 10, 2015). ISER Discussion Paper No. 939, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2616601

Serguey Braguinsky (Contact Author)

Carnegie Mellon University - Department of Social and Decision Sciences ( email )

Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3890
United States

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