Many prior studies have examined latecomer firms’ learning and upgrading; however, the context of upgrading changes significantly when they passed the initial catch-up stage and we know very little about how latecomer firms achieve continuous upgrading after they enter into beyond catch-up stage. This study employs a longitudinal case study to investigate how a latecomer firm pursued ambidextrous learning and achieved technological upgrading successfully in three different stages. We find that latecomer firms can achieve sustained technological upgrading through ambidextrous learning and that the specific learning mode in different stages can evolve with windows of opportunity and technological capabilities. These findings extend our understanding of how latecomer firms can upgrade to the innovation frontier and shed new insights into the ambidextrous learning literature. Implications for policy are discussed and directions for further research are outlined.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China [grant numbers 71772097, 71572187, 71502163, and 71232013].
© KOSIME, ASIALICS, STEPI 2020.
- Ambidextrous learning
- latecomer firms
- technological capability
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Economics and Econometrics
- Management of Technology and Innovation