How industry mutations redefine related variety: The case of Internet-based advertising
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Through the distinction of the notion of diversity into related and unrelated, the related variety approach represents an interesting attempt to improve our understanding of industrial dynamics and economic growth. However, using the insights from a case study on Internet based market communication this study seeks to problematize how the related variety approach so far may be read as a somewhat static approach. Through a sample of businesses that offer services within Internet-based market communication, the study uncovers the range of actors who are de facto related to each other within these economic activities. This simple exercise reveals that actors who are de facto related would have been categorised as unrelated in the related variety approach. These actors used to be unrelated, but due to convergence of existing and new technologies they have become related. In this way the paper not only aims to document how this particular industrial field is developing, it also suggests that the related variety approach does not take into account how changing technological conditions continuously alter the composition of related and unrelated actors in the economy. The related variety approach may thus still have a potential to improve its ability to reflect actual relations among industrial actors in its analytical apparatus. The paper suggests alternative indicators that to a larger extent may be tackling how technological change constantly alters the degree of relatedness between various actors.
related variety, advertising, new media, ICT, economic geography
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-109862OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-109862DiVA: diva2:274316
ProjectsCreativity and Innovation in the Cultural Industries