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"Death hurts, but it isn't fatal: the postexit diffusion of knowledge created by innovative companies"

Glenn Hoetker and Rajshree Agarwal

 

First Author :

Glenn Hoetker
College of Business
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
1206 S. Sixth Street
350 Wohlers Hall, M/C 706
Champaign, IL 61820
USA

217-265-4081
217-244-7969 (Fax)

ghoetker@uiuc.edu

http://www.business.uiuc.edu/faculty/hoetker.html


Second Author :

Rajshree Agarwal
College of Business
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
1206 S. Sixth Street
350 Wohlers Hall, M/C 706
Champaign, IL 61820
USA

217-265-5513
217-244-7969 (Fax)

agarwalr@uiuc.edu

http://www.business.uiuc.edu/faculty/agarwal.html

 
 
Abstract :
 
The innovative knowledge created by firms that ultimately exit their industries represents a source of technology that existing firms may build on. However, no empirical work has examined if such knowledge dies with an innovating firm or if significant diffusion of knowledge occurs even after a firm exits an industry. We base our theoretical predictions about the differing effects of firm exit on private and public knowledge and discuss implications for interfirm knowledge transfer. Using the disk drive industry as our empirical setting, we investigated the main and moderating effects of firm exit on the rate of knowledge diffusion to other firms. Our findings are consistent with prior work highlighting the importance of location and employee mobility in knowledge transfer. We also found evidence that the ability to use a firm as a template plays a critical role in successfully replicating its knowledge. Absent this template, knowledge “stickiness” reduces knowledge diffusion.
 
 
Footnotes & Acknowledgements :
 
Both authors contributed equally. The research was partially supported by funds received from the Campus Research Board, University of Illinois. We thank April Franco for access to data. The manuscript has benefited from comments received from Juan Alcacer, MB Sarkar, Charles Williams, Rosemarie Ziedonis, and seminar participants at the 2003 Academy meetings and at the University of Illinois. The usual disclaimer applies.
 
 
Manuscript Received : 2005
Manuscript Published : 2005
 
 
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