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Alternative Paths to Competitive Advantage: A Fuzzy-Set Analysis of the Origins of Large Firms

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Author Info

  • Joonas Jarvinen
  • Juha-Antti Lamberg
  • Johan-Peter Murmann
  • Jari Ojala

Abstract

Scholars have documented the importance of national-level factors for the competitive success of firms on a global scale. These studies typically identify multiple factors that are behind the emergence of large and successful firms in particular national clusters. However, there has been relatively little research identifying whether such factors are all collectively necessary to produce the outcome, or whether only a few of the factors in different combinations might be sufficient to generate the shift in competitive advantage manifested in the market power of large “flagship” firms. In this paper, we study the evolution of one industry across six countries in which the competitive position of national firms changed considerably during our 100-year analysis period. The results of our combined historical and fuzzy-set analyses show that an unequal distribution of resources may lead to alternative causal pathways to competitive advantage of the largest firms.

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File URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13662710903371066
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Industry and Innovation.

Volume (Year): 16 (2009)
Issue (Month): 6 ()
Pages: 545-574

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Handle: RePEc:taf:indinn:v:16:y:2009:i:6:p:545-574

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Related research

Keywords: Industry evolution; competitive advantage of large firms; national clusters; history; paper industry; fuzzy-set analysis;

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Cited by:
  1. Peltoniemi, Mirva, 2013. "Mechanisms of capability evolution in the Finnish forest industry cluster," Journal of Forest Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 190-205.
  2. Maria Del Sorbo & Nick von Tunzelmann, 2011. "A gap in competencies or in capabilities?: the role of regional universities in developing scientific and technological skills in Campania," ERSA conference papers ersa11p1360, European Regional Science Association.

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