While extant studies on brokerage address its structural competitiveness and network performance, few studies address the fundamental question of whether all the brokerage types have identical and positive effects on network development. Extending the Gould and Fernandez’s brokerage topology, the study measures the contribution of the brokerage roles over to the network evolution. For the purpose, the Chinese technology transfer flow networks were utilized to reveal the brokerage patterns of three anchor regions—Beijing, Shanghai, and Shenzhen. The analysis outlines that Beijing and Shenzhen, as nation-wide brokerage hubs, transmit the technology across the whole regions, while Shanghai seems to be a more balanced broker region connecting the neighbour regions with the others. The longitudinal simulation analysis demonstrates that a liaison-type brokerage function, connecting the heterogeneous knowledge sources, contributes to the growth of the regional network.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited