Innovative performance is influenced both by the origins of the existing knowledge that is combined to generate innovation and by how economic actors search for new knowledge. Drawing on a sample of inter-firm dyadic R&D alliances, we found that whereas the integration of geographically distant knowledge and of organisationally proximate knowledge in R&D alliances are negatively related to the alliance innovative performance, search span positively moderates both relationships.We conclude that, in order to make the most of broadspan searching, firms participating in R&D alliances should integrate geographically distant but organisationally proximate knowledge. By doing so, firms take advantage of the diversity and novelty that characterises geographically distant knowledge, while preserving considerable levels of relative absorptive capacity that are needed for them to understand, internalise, and effectively use partners’ knowledge from different domains.
- Innovation performance
- Interorganisational knowledge-intensive collaboration
- joint patents
- search span