The purpose of this paper is to investigate how supply and demand interact during industrial emergence.
The paper builds on previous theorising about co-evolutionary dynamics, exploring the interaction between supply and demand in a study of the industrial emergence of the commercial inkjet cluster in Cambridge, UK. Data are collected through 13 interviews with professionals working in the industry.
The paper shows that as new industries emerge, asynchronies between technology supply and market demand create opportunities for entrepreneurial activity. In attempting to match innovative technologies to particular applications, entrepreneurs adapt to the system conditions and shape the environment to their own advantage. Firms that successfully operate in emerging industries demonstrate the functionality of new technologies, reducing uncertainty and increasing customer receptiveness.
The research is geographically bounded to the Cambridge commercial inkjet cluster. Further studies could consider commercial inkjet from a global perspective or test the applicability of the findings in other industries.
Technology-based firms are often innovating during periods of industrial emergence. The insights developed in this paper help such firms recognise the emerging context in which they operate and the challenges that need to overcome.
As an in depth study of a single industry, this research responds to calls for studies into industrial emergence, providing insights into how supply and demand interact during this phase of the industry lifecycle.
This work was supported by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) (grant number 45383 NMZM/080).
James Ford, S., J. Routley, M., Phaal, R. and R. Probert, D. (2014), "The industrial emergence of commercial inkjet printing", European Journal of Innovation Management, Vol. 17 No. 2, pp. 126-143. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJIM-01-2013-0002Download as .RIS
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