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Learning and the sources of corporate growth

Geroski, P   Mazzucato, M

Industrial and Corporate Change   11 (1) 623-644

August 2002

This paper explores the link between learning and corporate growth by developing different models of learning and showing that they produce observably different models of corporate growth. Using data on the growth of a number of firms in the US automobile industry during the 20th century, we compare these different models of growth in an effort to identify the major sources of learning which these firms seem to have relied on. Although there are interesting differences between growth processes before and after the Second World War, the basic conclusion that we are drawn to is that learning in this sector is largely unsystematic and opportunistic.