How much information is too much information? – The long-standing literature in information economics argues for how transactions fail due to the lack of information. For example, transactions in presence of information asymmetry elevate the risk of adverse selection for incumbents, lead to discounting offers for new ventures, and contribute to frictions in technology markets. Is the opposite always good or could there be a curvilinear effect of information? Understanding this relationship is important as we are living in a world in which information is more readily available than ever before. Particularly with advancements in technologies more and complex information can be codified and shared easily. This increased information availability has major implications for the way in which firms do business, particularly in their corporate strategies and innovation activities.
My research agenda is to understand how firms navigate through the changes in the external information environment. The theoretical underpinnings of my research are information economics and signaling, motivated by the Nobel laureates George Akerlof and Michael Spence, who laid the foundation of how information frictions are detrimental to transactions and how firms strategically signal their value to facilitate transactions. I, on the other hand, examine whether wider disclosures of information could also have a negative effect on some firms. Empirically, I investigate disclosure of technological information and its effects on firms' corporate strategies, knowledge searches, and innovation activities. I focus on technological information disclosures through third-party intermediaries such as the patent systems.
My dissertation aims to address the effects of information disclosures in a wide variety of settings. In a three-essay dissertation, titled "Essays on Information Disclosures", I investigate the dual nature of information disclosure and its effects on firms’ knowledge search and corporate strategies. In the first chapter, I investigate how disclosures of information facilitate knowledge transfer across geographic and organizational boundaries. While disclosure brings transparency to the information environment, it also increases competition and appropriation concerns for firms. My second and third chapters address these concerns. I investigate how entrepreneurial firms experience a devaluation and bargaining disadvantage when information about their nascent technological developments is widely disclosed in the public domain.