New Technologies and Network Embeddedness

Throughout the topics we covered this past week, I was really intrigued by the concept that one is better off looking through jobs outside of their own immediate group of friends. Someone made a blog post about this already, however, so instead of writing about the idea, I started thinking about whether or not this dynamic is the only situation in which it can be detrimental to stay with a tight knit group of friends.

Then, like magic, I came across this article which discusses how network embeddedness can affect a company’s ability, in both good and bad ways, to be innovative and come up with “novel technologies.” It’s extremely fascinating to read about and try to comprehend how being in such a big industry can affect your production in even the slightest of ways. However, still really lost in thought about the causality behind why closest friends aren’t the best for aiding in a job hunt, I came across a specific point made in the article thats asks if a company belonging to a group of similar companies is “potential for new knowledge creation rather than its function as a channel for diffusion of existing information and knowledge for exploitation.” All this statement does is ask whether companies are actually creating novel technology or are they all just recycling technologies from each other?

I found this concept to be similar to the one brought up in book about job hunting. The same way a person won’t be able to branch out if s/he continues to only try to network through people of the, more or less, same interests and desires, how can a company actually expand and innovate if it’s stuck only looking at what is directly in front of it: things that have already been invented or explored. This article, this topic as a whole, has only cemented by initial peaked interest in this course. That is, that everything in this course is totally overarching and applies to every aspect of life, not just economics.