1st Edition

Catching Up and Leapfrogging The new latecomers in the integrated circuits industry

By Xiao-Shan Yap, Rajah Rasiah Copyright 2017
    170 Pages
    by Routledge

    170 Pages 28 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Ever since Schumpeter’s groundbreaking work there has been a plethora of new research seeking to extend the direction and dynamics of innovation. Using a rich account of detailed interviews, this book offers new evidence on how latecomers have successfully caught up and leapfrogged incumbent firms.

    Catching Up and Leapfrogging: the new latecomers in the integrated circuits industry explores how technological transitions affect latecomer catch-up strategies, and vice versa, in a high technology industry. It looks to the East Asian latecomers who, towards the end of the twentieth century, pioneered a new pathway through organizational change by specializing in the key production stages of integrated circuits and pushing technologies further. This volume assesses how latecomer resource acquisition strategies have varied alongside structural industry changes and evaluates the mechanisms through which firms started life as technology followers and rose to become technology leaders.

    Xiao-Shan Yap and Rajah Rasiah present a unique story about how firm strategies evolve from the catching up phase to the leapfrogging phase, captured from the accounts of managers on the ground. It is the first time firm-level strategies have been systematically analysed to describe twenty-first century strategic management in the integrated circuits industry in particular, and the high tech industry in general.

    The evidence and analysis in this book offers insights for chief executive officers, policy-makers and researchers to revisit existing approaches to the theory of catching up and leapfrogging.

    List of figures

    List of tables


    List of abbreviations

    1 Introduction

    2 Technical regimes, catch-up and organizational dynamics

    3 Technological regimes, organizational boundaries and patterns of innovation

    4 Resource acquisition strategies and catching up

    5 Co-evolutionary lock-in as a strategic mechanism

    6 Synthesis and implications



    Xiao-Shan Yap is currently a post-doctoral researcher at Eawag, the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology, Switzerland.

    Rajah Rasiah is Professor of International Development at the Faculty of Economics and Administration, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur.