Firm Behaviour and the Introduction of New exports: Evidence from Brazil


  • Xavier Cirera,

    1. Research Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies.
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  • Anabel Marin,

    1. Currently based at Centro de Estudios Para Transformación (CENIT), has also worked as a research fellow at the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) at the University of Sussex, where she also achieved her PhD in Science and Technology Policy.
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  • Ricardo Markwald

    1. Worked as a research expert with the Institute of Applied Economic Research (IPEA) since 1980, specialising in the fields of macro-economics, macroeconomic modeling, and the foreign sector of the Brazilian economy.
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This paper contributes to understanding the process of export diversification by analysing firm level determinants in Brazil during the period 2000–2009. The first objective of the paper is to establish the set of firm characteristics and processes that are more conductive to new exports; the second, to identify different pathways to diversification regarding relatedness and sophistication and, which firm level behaviours can be associated to the different paths. We answer these questions using a unique dataset that links data on exports, innovation and firms characteristics at the firm level. The paper contributes to the literature on export diversification and on preparation for exporting by identifying firm level behaviours that contribute to the process of diversification. In particular, the findings suggest that firms prepare for diversification by first gaining power in the domestic market and more importantly that they do so by adopting specific innovation and learning efforts.