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Multinational firms, global value chains and the organization of knowledge transfer

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  • Saliola, Federica
  • Zanfei, Antonello

Abstract

This paper combines insights from different streams of literature to develop a more comprehensive framework for the analysis of knowledge transfer via value chain relationships. We integrate the existing literature in three ways. First, we consider value chain relationships as a multi-facet process of interaction between buyers and suppliers, involving different modes of knowledge transmission and development. Second, we assess whether and to what extent value chain relationships are associated with the presence of multinationals and with their embeddedness in the host economy. Third, we take into account the capabilities of local firms to handle the technology as a factor influencing knowledge transfer through value chain relationships. Using data on 1385 firms active in Thailand in 2001-2003, we apply a multinomial logit model to test how the nature and intensity of multinational presence and the competencies of local firms affect the organization of international knowledge transfer. We find that knowledge intensive relationships, which are characterized by a significant transmission of technical and organizational competencies along the value chains, are positively associated with the presence of global buyers in the local market, with the efforts of MNCs to adapt technology to local contexts, and with the technical capabilities of domestic firms. By contrast, the age of subsidiaries and the share of inputs purchased locally appear to increase the likelihood of value chain relationships with a lower technological profile.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Research Policy.

Volume (Year): 38 (2009)
Issue (Month): 2 (March)
Pages: 369-381

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Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:38:y:2009:i:2:p:369-381

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/respol

Related research

Keywords: Global value chain Multinationals Knowledge transfer Knowledge spillovers;

References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Giroud, Axèle & Jindra, Björn & Marek, Philipp, 2012. "Heterogeneous FDI in Transition Economies – A Novel Approach to Assess the Developmental Impact of Backward Linkages," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(11), pages 2206-2220.
  2. M. Teoman Pamukçu & Alper Sönmez, 2011. "Technology Transfer in the Global Automotive Value Chain. Lessons from the Turkish Automotive Industry," STPS Working Papers 1109, STPS - Science and Technology Policy Studies Center, Middle East Technical University, revised Dec 2011.
  3. Giroud, Axèle & Scott-Kennel, Joanna, 2009. "MNE linkages in international business: A framework for analysis," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 555-566, December.
  4. Antonio Accetturo & Anna Giunta & Salvatore Rossi, 2011. "The Italian firms between crisis and the new globalization," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 86, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  5. Eduardo Ribeiro & Victor Prochnik & João DeNegri, 2010. "Productivity And Growth In The Brazilian Informatics Industry," Working Papers 12-2010, Universidade de São Paulo, Faculdade de Economia, Administração e Contabilidade de Ribeirão Preto.
  6. Lema, Rasmus & Quadros, Ruy & Schmitz, Hubert, 2012. "Shifts in Innovation Power to Brazil and India: Insights from the Auto and Software Industries," MPRA Paper 49591, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Franco, Eliane & Ray, Sangeeta & Ray, Pradeep Kanta, 2011. "Patterns of Innovation Practices of Multinational-affiliates in Emerging Economies: Evidences from Brazil and India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 39(7), pages 1249-1260, July.
  8. Alvandi , Keyvan & Chaminade , Cristina & Lv, Ping, 2013. "Commonalities and differences between production-related FDI (PFDI) and technology-related FDI (TFDI) in developed and emerging economies," CIRCLE Electronic Working Papers 2013/47, Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy.
  9. Perri, Alessandra & Andersson, Ulf & Nell, Phillip C. & Santangelo, Grazia D., 2013. "Balancing the trade-off between learning prospects and spillover risks: MNC subsidiaries’ vertical linkage patterns in developed countries," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 48(4), pages 503-514.
  10. Simona, Gentile-Lüdecke & Axèle, Giroud, 2012. "Knowledge Transfer from TNCs and Upgrading of Domestic Firms: The Polish Automotive Sector," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(4), pages 796-807.
  11. Andrea Filippetti & Marion Frenz & Grazia Ietto-Gillies, 2013. "The Role Of Internationalization As A Determinant Of Innovation Performance. An Analysis Of 42 Countries," Working Papers 10, Birkbeck Centre for Innovation Management Research, revised Jan 2013.
  12. Dallas, Mark P., 2014. "Manufacturing Paradoxes: Foreign Ownership, Governance, and Value Chains in China’s Light Industries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 47-62.
  13. Torres-Fuchslocher, Carlos, 2010. "Understanding the development of technology-intensive suppliers in resource-based developing economies," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 268-277, March.
  14. Azadegan, Arash & Wagner, Stephan M., 2011. "Industrial upgrading, exploitative innovations and explorative innovations," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 130(1), pages 54-65, March.
  15. Chaminade, Cristina & de Fuentes, Claudia, 2012. "Competences as drivers and enablers of globalization of innovation: Swedish ICT industry and emerging economies," CIRCLE Electronic Working Papers 2012/6, Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy.

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