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Collecting the Pieces of the FDI Knowledge Spillovers Puzzle

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  • Roger Smeets
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    Abstract

    Recent surveys of the empirical literature have concluded that the evidence is mixed on the magnitude, direction, and even existence of knowledge spillovers from foreign direct investment (FDI). This article reviews the recent theoretical and empirical literature that responds to these inconclusive results and considers three main issues: spillover channels, mediating factors, and FDI heterogeneity. Studies that take into account individual spillover channels find robust evidence of knowledge spillovers from FDI. Studies on the importance of mediating factors and FDI heterogeneity are less conclusive and could benefit from greater convergence in methodologies and greater specificity in the spillover channels of interest. More generally, many studies do not properly distinguish between knowledge spillovers and knowledge transfers, and empirical studies seem to greatly outnumber theoretical studies. Copyright The Author 2008. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / the world bank . All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oxfordjournals.org, Oxford University Press.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by World Bank Group in its journal The World Bank Research Observer.

    Volume (Year): 23 (2008)
    Issue (Month): 2 (March)
    Pages: 107-138

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    Handle: RePEc:oup:wbrobs:v:23:y:2008:i:2:p:107-138

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    Cited by:
    1. Franco, Chiara, 2013. "Exports and FDI motivations: Empirical evidence from U.S. foreign subsidiaries," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 47-62.
    2. Jan Hanousek & Evžen Kocenda & Mathilde Maurel, 2010. "Direct and indirect effects of FDI in emerging European markets : a survey and meta-analysis," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne 10024, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
    3. Del Bo, Chiara F., 2013. "FDI spillovers at different levels of industrial and spatial aggregation: Evidence from the electricity sector," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 1490-1502.
    4. Metaxas, Theodore & Kechagia, Polyxeni, 2012. "F.D.I. through the imitation procedure The case of China: A Note," MPRA Paper 40886, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Farole, Thomas & Winkler, Deborah, 2012. "Foreign firm characteristics, absorptive capacity and the institutional framework : the role of mediating factors for FDI spillovers in low- and middle-income countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6265, The World Bank.
    6. Chiara Franco & Subash Sasidharan, 2009. "MNEs and Export Spillovers: An Analysis of Indian Manufacturing Industries," Working Papers 2009-049, Madras School of Economics,Chennai,India.
    7. Adamos Adamou & Subash S, 2008. "The Impact of R&D and Foreign Direct Investment on Firm Growth in Emerging-Developing Countries: Evidence from Indian Manufacturing Industries," Working Papers 2008-037, Madras School of Economics,Chennai,India.
    8. Bruno, Randolph Luca & Cipollina, Maria, 2014. "FDI Impact on Firm Performance in Enlarged Europe: Evidence from a Meta-Regression Analysis," IZA Discussion Papers 8085, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Suyanto & Salim, Ruhul A. & Bloch, Harry, 2009. "Does Foreign Direct Investment Lead to Productivity Spillovers? Firm Level Evidence from Indonesia," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(12), pages 1861-1876, December.
    10. Hallin, Christina & Holmström Lind, Christine, 2012. "Revisiting the external impact of MNCs: An empirical study of the mechanisms behind knowledge spillovers from MNC subsidiaries," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 167-179.
    11. Carol Newman & John Rand & Theodore Talbot & Finn Tarp, 2014. "Technology transfers, foreign investment and productivity spillovers: evidence from Vietnam," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp440, IIIS.
    12. Havranek, Tomas & Irsova, Zuzana, 2011. "Estimating vertical spillovers from FDI: Why results vary and what the true effect is," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 234-244.
    13. Winkler, Deborah, 2013. "Potential and actual FDI spillovers in global value chains : the role of foreign investor characteristics, absorptive capacity and transmission channels," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6424, The World Bank.
    14. Franco, Chiara & Sasidharan, Subash, 2010. "MNEs, technological efforts and channels of export spillover: An analysis of Indian manufacturing industries," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 270-288, September.
    15. Sun, Sizhong, 2009. "Impact of aggregation on measuring FDI spillovers: a Monte Carlo appraisal," MPRA Paper 15340, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    16. Pradeep Kumar Keshari, 2011. "Efficiency Spillovers from FDI in the Indian Machinery Industry: A Firm Level Study Using Panel Data Models," Working Papers id:4195, eSocialSciences.
    17. Wang, Jue & Liu, Xiaming & Li, Xiaoying, 2009. "A dual-role typology of multinational subsidiaries," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 578-591, December.
    18. Elisa Giuliani & Chiara Macchi, 2013. "Multinational Corporations’ Economic And Human Rights Impacts On Developing Countries: A Review And Research Agenda," Discussion Papers 2013/158, Dipartimento di Economia e Management (DEM), University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

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