The more the merrier? Network portfolio size and innovation performance in Nigerian firms

  • Egbetokun A
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Abstract

Abstract A positive relationship between firms' networking activities and innovativeness has been consistently established in the literature on innovation. However, studies considering different innovation types, and on developing countries are scarce. This paper addresses questions concerning the relationship between networking strategies and innovativeness of firms, using innovation survey data on Nigerian firms. Quantile regression is applied to trace the link between portfolio size and innovation at different levels of innovative success. The results show a positive relationship between a firm's innovation performance and the size of its networking portfolio. This relationship varies across different innovation types and with increasing innovation performance. The findings suggest that the widely accepted portfolio approach to external search for knowledge is not necessarily always the best - its utility depends on the firm's current level of innovative success. This poses a challenge for open innovation.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Collaboration
  • External knowledge
  • Innovative success
  • Networking
  • Nigeria
  • Open innovation

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