Unternehmensnetzwerke in der Photovoltaik-Industrie – Starke Verbundenheit und hohe Kooperationsintensität
The Photovoltaic-(PV)-Industry is a comparatively new industrial sector which is affected by high level of uncertainty. This uncertainty is derived from different technology paths as same as uncertainty about the future market developments. Important instruments to come up with uncertainty are firm networks. Thereby the state of the knowledge about the degree of interconnectedness between the German PV-industry is poor. This article aims to close this gap by giving an overview about the integration of PV-enterprises in firm networks. The empirical analysis of the network structure of the German PV-industry thereby confirms the expected high level of network relations. Almost nine out of ten firms cooperate with other PV-firms in Germany. Also, the intensity of cooperation turns out to be above the average compared to other industrial sectors. On average one PV-firm cooperates with 5.8 other PV-firms. This indicates possibilities for a better knowledge exchange in the sector. Overall the high cooperation intensity supports the assumption that PV-industry is able to benefit from the spatial concentration of the industry in the region. Despite the dense network which has already emerged, the promotion of networks can still be an efficient paradigm to support innovativeness and growth in this sector. This is going to be even more successful if the results of the network analysis are integrated into the government supporting scheme.