Knowledge and Investment


Knowledge and Investment

The Sources of Innovation in Industry

9781858987286 Edward Elgar Publishing
Rinaldo Evangelista, Cnr-Irpps, Roma, Italy
Publication Date: 1999 ISBN: 978 1 85898 728 6 Extent: 224 pp
This book will be welcomed by those interested in technological and innovation studies, industrial organization and business strategy.

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This innovative book analyses the role and importance of investment in knowledge and fixed capital as two distinct sources of technological change. It provides a balance to most of the recent literature on technological change, which focuses almost exclusively on R&D and intangible investment in innovation and technological assets. The author shows how innovative investment in fixed capital still represents a central part of innovation in firms.

The book begins by reviewing the major economic approaches to technology and innovation. It discusses the progressive shift from capital (embodied) investment to disembodied investment including R&D and design. Using one of the most extensive data sources, Rinaldo Evangelista empirically tests whether disembodied technological activities are more important than traditional investment in productive capital. Perhaps surprisingly, the evidence suggests that fixed productive capital emerges as the most relevant and widespread source of investment in innovation across firms and industrial sectors. The author concludes that even in high-tech industries embodied and disembodied technological activities are complementary rather than substitutive.

This book will be welcomed by those interested in technological and innovation studies, industrial organization and business strategy.
Critical Acclaim
‘This book explores the circular relations between innovation and investments; in doing so it provides a new original bridge between the classical and post Keynesian traditions of analysis of investment and the neo-Schumpeterian approach to the knowledge based economy.’
– Cristiano Antonelli, University of Turin and Collegio Carlo Alberto, Italy

‘. . . Rinaldo Evangelista has advanced our understanding of the sources of dynamism in economic development. I commend his book most strongly to everyone with an interest in this field of exciting research.’
– From the preface by Christopher Freeman, SPRU – Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex, UK and Maastricht University, the Netherlands

‘Rinaldo Evangelista’s book is a major step forward in the analysis of technological change. By comparing and contrasting embodied and disembodied forms of technology, he is able to give a much more complete analysis of technological change, its patterns and its costs. The findings should become central to empirical studies of national systems of innovation as well as to conceptualising technology.’
– G.N. von Tunzelmann, SPRU – Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex, UK
Contents: Introduction Part I: Investment in Knowledge and Machinery: Theory and Perspectives 1. Disembodied and Embodied Technological Change 2. Disembodied and Embodied Perspectives on Technological Change in the Economic Literature 3. Disembodied and Embodied Technological Change in the Innovation Literature 4. Embodied and Disembodied Perspectives on the Relationship Between Technological Change, Firm Size and Market Structure 5. Towards an Integrated Perspective on Technological Change and Industrial Structure Part II: Evidence from the Italian Industry 6. An Overview of Innovation Activities in Manufacturing and Services 7. Embodied and Disembodied Innovation Strategies and the Production Structure of Firms 8. Innovation Strategies and the Productive Structure of Firms 9. Innovative Patterns and Technological Regimes of Production 10. Embodied and Disembodied Patterns of Technological Change and Production Structure 11. Conclusions and Policy Implications Bibliography Index

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