General Purpose Technology, Spin-Out, and Innovation

Technological Development of Laser Diodes in the United States and Japan

  • Hiroshi¬†Shimizu

Part of the Advances in Japanese Business and Economics book series (AJBE, volume 21)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xix
  2. Part I

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Hiroshi Shimizu
      Pages 3-14
    3. Hiroshi Shimizu
      Pages 47-62
  3. Part II

  4. Part III

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 219-219
    2. Hiroshi Shimizu
      Pages 221-245
    3. Hiroshi Shimizu
      Pages 247-258
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 259-312

About this book


This book focuses on exploring the relationship between spin-outs from incumbents and the patterns of innovation in general purpose technology. Do spin-outs really promote innovation? What happens if star scientists leave the incumbents and establish a startup to target untapped markets? Entrepreneurial spin-outs have been recognized as an engine of innovation. General purpose technology, such as the steam engine in the Industrial Revolution, has been considered an engine of growth. This book provides new perspectives on how entrepreneurial spin-outs shape the patterns of innovation in general purpose technology by integrating theoretical findings in industrial organizations and includes innovation studies and detailed evidence from a longitudinal case study. Concretely, by longitudinally exploring the technological development of laser diodes in the USA and Japan, this study examines how the existence or absence of an entrepreneurial strategic choice for spin-outs influences the patterns of subsequent technological development. The longitudinal analysis in this book shows that spin-outs could hinder the subsequent development of existing technology when that technology is still at a nascent level, because the cumulative effects of technological development could disappear if research and development personnel leave their parent firms in order to target different sub-markets. The findings of this book show that institutional settings designed to promote spin-outs do not necessarily promote innovation. The book offers novel theoretical insights into the relationship between institutions promoting spin-outs and the developments of general purpose technology.


Innovation General Purpose Technology Spin out Startup Technological Trajectory Laser Diode Sub market Entrepreneurship Subsequent Technological Development US and Japan Longitudinal Comparison

Authors and affiliations

  • Hiroshi¬†Shimizu
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of CommerceWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan

Bibliographic information