Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Papers in Innovation Studies,
Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy

No 2015/30: The role of geographical proximity in the international knowledge flows of European firms: an overview of different knowledge transfer mechanisms

Cristina Chaminade () and Monica Plechero ()
Additional contact information
Cristina Chaminade: CIRCLE, Lund University
Monica Plechero: DEAMS – University of Trieste, Italy & CIRCLE, Lund University

Abstract: The paper provides an overview of the international knowledge flows in Europe particularly looking at the drivers and consequences of such flows as well as the general trend. It distinguishes between different types of mechanisms for the acquisition and transfer of knowledge from trade to research and technological collaboration, mobility of human capital and FDI. The paper is empirical in nature and targeted to a wider audience. The analysis reveals that proximity matters significantly for the mobility of human capital as well as for the establishment of collaborative networks. In both cases, intra-Europe knowledge flows are more important that extra-Europe knowledge flows, thus pointing to the role of the European market facilitating these forms of exchange. The patterns of offshoring of R&D as well as trade networks are rather different- more global than intra-European. In other words, trade and investment networks are more dispersed globally than mobility of human capital and research and technological networks.

Keywords: Exports of high tech products; international research collaboration; international mobility of researchers; offshoring of R&D; Europe

JEL-codes: F20; O30

28 pages, September 8, 2015

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