Should firms innovate or imitate new technologies?

Dr Paolo Zeppini has published a new joint paper with Professor Cars Hommes (University of Amsterdam) that is entitled: Innovate or imitate? Behavioural technological change .

The article was published in the Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control. The journal concerns theoretical and empirical aspects of economic dynamics as well as the development of computational methods.

The article presents a model with of innovation and imitation as strategies that are adopted by competing firms.

There is a minority game interplay of market price and firms' choices, such that one strategy is more attractive the less frequently it is adopted by other firms. The introduction of stickiness in firms' decisions reduces the amplitude of price fluctuations, but may lead to chaotic dynamics, with unpredictable long run outcomes.

When technological progress is introduced as the result of cumulative innovation decisions, different regimes are possible. In a market with inelastic demand, technological progress comes with a decreasing number of innovating . If the demand is elastic instead, goes with more innovators and less imitators.

The two regimes describe different phases of an industry life cycle: for instance model simulations are compared to data from the tyre industry and the solar photovoltaic industry.

Explore further

Sharing patents with competitors may encourage innovation as probability for market success increases, study suggests

More information: Cars Hommes, Paolo Zeppini, "Innovate or Imitate? Behavioural technological change," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Volume 48, November 2014, Pages 308-324, ISSN 0165-1889,
Provided by University of Bath
Citation: Should firms innovate or imitate new technologies? (2014, November 6) retrieved 20 October 2019 from
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.

Feedback to editors

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more