This paper attempts to provide an analysis of the technological innovations, by using the printing Industry as a case study. Theories of diffusion are examined, with the reality of the adoption innovations in that industry being used to make some evaluation of the applicability of theory.
This paper attempts to provide a critique of the standard models of diffusion which are associated with the Contribution of Griliches and Mansfield. This standard model contributed to a number of studies examining “S-curves” as maps of the pattern of diffusion. Considerable empirical work has been undertaken on the determinants on these innovation adoption patterns. Criticism of the model has developed: whether diffusion patterns are actually sigmoid; examinations of variables affecting diffusion; and the contention that the model is based on unrealistic and restrictive concepts. Critics, such as Gold, consider a significant area of simplified assumptions to be in relation to intra-firm decision making.
The paper endeavours to examine the experience of the printing industry which has undergone a number of technological changes, as innovations have been adopted, to shed light on the theories of diffusion. In particular, it adds considerable backing to the need to pay closer attention to decisions made within individual enterprises to analyse the adoption of innovations.