Interorganizational innovation across geographic and cognitive boundaries: does firm size matter?
A key trend of recent literature is the increased use of interorganizational relationships to achieve organizational objectives. While the phenomenon of collaborative innovation has attracted significant academic interest in recent years, little research has been undertaken to examine how widespread the collaborative phenomenon is relative to organizational size or the diversity of partner organizations being leveraged for collaborative innovation activity. Consequently, this paper seeks to address two research questions. Firstly, the extent to which collaborative innovation is occurring within different sized firms that are research and development active, and secondly, are these different sized firms engaging in collaborative innovation activities with different types of partner organization. The results support earlier studies regarding the increasing practice by industry leveraging interorganizational collaborations in order to support innovation. Findings highlight that large‐scale firms are more active than SMEs in leveraging external resources for innovation and that small‐sized firms are the firm category least active in the practice. In addition, findings indicate that when small and medium‐ sized enterprises (SMEs) are collaborating, they leverage both vertical and horizontal partner linkages but that the sector is constrained by geographic distance in terms of the diversity of its collaborating partners.