Evolution of R&D Capabilities: The Role of Knowledge Networks Within a Firm Academic Article uri icon


  • In this paper, we suggest that the characteristics of individual positions in an intraorganizational network of inventors or intrafirm knowledge network predict the likelihood with which knowledge created by an inventor is used in the firms research and development (R&D) activities. Such choices lead to path dependence and subsequent specialization. We provide empirical evidence that a firms R&D is concentrated in those areas where it chooses to recombine knowledge, offering support for the path-dependent evolution of capabilities. We test this theory by analyzing the R&D networks in DuPont, a highly regarded Fortune 500 chemical company. Cox Proportional Regression models of intrafirm citations on network characteristics offer strong empirical support for our theory.

published proceedings

  • Management Science

altmetric score

  • 0.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Nerkar, A., & Paruchuri, S.

citation count

  • 309

complete list of authors

  • Nerkar, Atul||Paruchuri, Srikanth

publication date

  • January 2005