Technological resources, external research partners and export performance : a study of Italian high-tech SMEs

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Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this study is to examine the influence of technological resources and external research partners on the export performance of Italian high-tech SMEs. Methodology/approach: Drawing on the Resource Based View as theoretical framework and deriving hypotheses from the export management literature, we used a sample of Italian manufacturing firms to run a two steps analysis. First, a Levene’s test is conducted to assess whether SMEs operating in the high-tech sectors differ from those operating in other manufacturing sectors. Second, employing ordinary least squares (OLS) regression we analysed which technological resources and external research partners best discriminate the export performance of high-tech SMEs. Findings: Our empirical results revealed that: (1) the use of output rather than input measures of innovation better captures the contribution of technological resources on export performance of firms in our sample; (2) product innovations positively and significantly affect the export performance of technology intensive SMEs; (3) among external research partners, universities provide positive spillover effects on their export performance. Originality/value: This study provides the heterogenic perspective of the high-tech sectors when attempting to explain the influence of technological resources and external research partners on the export performance of SMEs. Second, the study expands the traditional measures used in the literature for firms’ technological resources and it comprehensively analyse innovative inputs and innovative outputs while exploring whether innovative efforts have had a measurable effect on the export performance of high-tech SMEs.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteProgress in international business research
EditorJ Pla-Barber, J Alegre
Pagine299-326
Numero di pagine28
Volume5
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2010

Keywords

  • Technological resources, External research partners, Export performance, High-tech SMEs.

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