Projects per year
The understanding of the innovation process has changed considerably in the past years. Models have shifted from linear and firm-based conceptions towards interdependent and systemic approaches. Both national and regional innovation systems have been discussed in recent literature. The present paper investigates on the basis of data for several European regions, collected in the course of a European project, to which extent companies engage in networks in their innovation process. Also, the types of partners, their respective locations as well as differences between the regions are explored. Results show that for many firms innovation is still a rather internal process. Reliance on internal competence and lack of trust to other firms are among the reasons for this. Nevertheless, for another group of companies networks are much more relevant. They draw on ideas, know-how and complementary assets from customers, suppliers, consultants, universities, funding and training institutions. These networks can be observed from regional to global levels. There are considerable differences between company types and regions, however.
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