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Technology sourcing versus technology exploitation: an analysis of US foreign direct investment flows

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  • James Love
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    Abstract

    The traditional paradigm of foreign direct investment (FDI) suggests that FDI is undertaken principally to exploit some firm-specific advantage in a foreign country which provides a locational advantage to the investor. However, recent theoretical work suggests a model of FDI in which the motivation is not to exploit existing technological advantages in a foreign country, but to access such technology and transfer it from the host economy to the investing multinational corporation via spillover effects. This paper tests the technology sourcing versus technology exploiting hypotheses for a panel of sectoral FDI flows between the United States and major OECD nations over a 15 year period. The research makes use of Patel and Vega's (Research Policy, 28, 145-55, 1999) taxonomy of sectors which are likely a priori to exhibit technology sourcing and exploiting behaviour respectively. While there is evidence that FDI flows into the United States are attracted to R&D intensive sectors, very little support is found for the technology sourcing hypothesis either for inward or outward FDI flows. The results suggest that, in aggregate, firm-specific 'ownership' effects remain powerful determinants of FDI flows.

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    File URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/0003684032000125060
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Applied Economics.

    Volume (Year): 35 (2003)
    Issue (Month): 15 ()
    Pages: 1667-1678

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    Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:35:y:2003:i:15:p:1667-1678

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    Web page: http://www.tandfonline.com/RAEC20

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    References

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    1. Patel, Pari & Vega, Modesto, 1999. "Patterns of internationalisation of corporate technology: location vs. home country advantages1," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(2-3), pages 145-155, March.
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    7. James Love & Francisco Lage-Hidalgo, 2000. "Analysing the determinants of US direct investment in Mexico," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(10), pages 1259-1267.
    8. Cantwell, John, 1995. "The Globalisation of Technology: What Remains of the Product Cycle Model?," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(1), pages 155-74, February.
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    16. Barrell, Ray & Pain, Nigel, 1996. "An Econometric Analysis of U.S. Foreign Direct Investment," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(2), pages 200-207, May.
    17. Kogut, Bruce & Chang, Sea Jin, 1991. "Technological Capabilities and Japanese Foreign Direct Investment in the United States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(3), pages 401-13, August.
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    Cited by:
    1. Richard Harris, 2009. "Spillover and Backward Linkage Effects of FDI: Empirical Evidence for the UK," SERC Discussion Papers 0016, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
    2. Richard Harris, 2009. "Spillover and backward linkage effects of FDI: empirical evidence for the UK," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 33206, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    3. Francis M. Kemegue, 2009. "Do Neighbors of Host Countries Matter to Aggregate US FDI Outflows?," Working Papers 200929, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.
    4. Richard Baldwin & Toshihiro Okubo, 2012. "Networked FDI: Sales and Sourcing Patterns of Japanese Foreign Affiliates," NBER Working Papers 18083, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Joel Stiebale & Frank Reize, 2008. "The Impact of FDI on Innovation in Target Firms," Ruhr Economic Papers 0050, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    6. Kemegue, F. & Mohan, R., 2009. "US FDI flows to ASEAN-5: Do Geographic Neighbors Matter?," Applied Econometrics and International Development, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 9(1).
    7. Yao, Shujie & Wei, Kailei, 2007. "Economic growth in the presence of FDI: The perspective of newly industrialising economies," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 211-234, March.
    8. Francis M. Kemegue, 2009. "Pattern of Interdependence of Aggregate FDI from the Same Source Country," Working Papers 200928, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.

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