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Keywords:

  • R&D investments;
  • real options theory;
  • know-ledge-based view;
  • technological capabilities

Abstract

In this paper we study the frequency of formal R&D investments. We link real options theory to the knowledge-based view to explain how a firm's knowledge resources influence its frequency of investing in R&D to establish technological options. Specifically, we propose that a firm that lacks internal knowledge resources is more likely to never invest in R&D, a firm that has both internal and external knowledge resources is more likely to sometimes invest in R&D, while a firm that has internal knowledge resources but lacks external knowledge resources is more likely to always invest in R&D. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.