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Abstract

USPTO patent data covering the years 1994–2008 is used in this study to examine the citation networks of electronic-paper display technology. Our primary aim is to provide a better understanding of the ways in which emerging firms interact with, and learn from, technology diffusers. Two implications can be drawn from our analysis. Firstly, emerging firms within an emerging industry can enhance their technological capabilities through positive external learning activity. Secondly, despite the fact that technology diffusers have clear technological advantages, with the emergence of a new field, their influence within the network could potentially be decayed if they fail to remain proactive in terms of the absorption of available external knowledge.

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