Since 1982, the government of Korea has actively promoted vertical cooperative R&D programs between government-sponsored research institutes (GRIs) and private firms. A number of firms participated in the programs because cooperative R&D could lower the risk and could contribute to rapid commercialization of many technologies. This paper examines the effectiveness of vertical cooperative R&D projects by the modes of cooperation between GRIs and industrial firms, and analyzes the performance of participating firms' technology sourcing strategies for commercial utilization of cooperative R&D results at the project performed from 1982 to 1989 under the Government-Industry Cooperative R&D Program sponsored by the Ministry of Science and Technology(MOST) in Korea. The cooperative R&D projects are classified into 4 groups by two criteria, i.e., the level of participation of firms, and the breadth of cooperation. The findings suggest that firms should actively participate in cooperative R&D projects. In addition, in order to enhance commercial success, cooperation between GRIs and industrial firms should not be limited to R&D stage only. The breadth of cooperation should be extended to commercialization stage. Small- and medium-sized firms participating in vertical cooperative R&D projects in Korea usually lack internal technological capabilities that are needed to commercialize the results of cooperative R&D. Three different technology sourcing strategies - exclusive cooperative R&D strategy, in-house development augmented cooperative R&D strategy, and licensing-in supplemented cooperative R&D strategy - are empirically derived through cluster analysis of the relative usage rates cooperative R&D and of other supplementary technology acquisition methods. The findings suggest that the firms participating in vertical cooperative R&D projects should try to utilize other supplementary technology acquisition methods in order to achieve commercial utilization of the vertical cooperative R&D results.
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