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FDI and Human Capital: A Research Agenda


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  • Magnus Blomström
  • Ari Kokko


After a review of the literature, this paper concludes that there is potential for significant “spillover effects” from FDI into host countries. However, it identifies some limitations of this potential to do with the stock of human capital, the interest in local firms of promoting skills transfer and the competition environment. The authors suggest comparing conditions and effects between regions, particularly between East Asia and Latin America where transfer in the former has been more consistent than in the latter. They propose, further, that an analysis of the type of FDI flowing to different regions and countries could provide clues to the potential for maximising the gains to local skills accumulation. Finally, studies are needed which examine the nature of skills provided by FDI, and ways in which training institutions, business schools, for example, can complement in-service training by firms in FDI host countries ... Après un panorama des travaux existants, ce Document technique met en évidence un potentiel « d'effets de retombée » significatifs des IDE dans les pays récepteurs. Sont toutefois identifiées un certain nombre de contraintes : le stock de capital humain, l'intérêt des entreprises locales pour les transferts de compétences et l'environnement concurrentiel. Les auteurs proposent de comparer les conditions et les effets entre les régions, en particulier entre l'Asie de l'Est et l'Amérique latine, celle-ci ayant bénéficié de transferts bien plus conséquents que celle-là. Ils suggèrent en outre qu'une analyse des types d'IDE qui se dirigent vers telle ou telle région ou pays pourrait fournir des pistes d'appréciation pour évaluer le potentiel de maximisation de l'accumulation locale de compétences. Enfin, des études complémentaires sont nécessaires pour identifier la nature des compétences délivrées par les IDE et la manière dont les établissements de formation, par exemple les écoles ...

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by OECD Publishing in its series OECD Development Centre Working Papers with number 195.

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Date of creation: Aug 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:oec:devaaa:195-en

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Cited by:
  1. repec:wii:bpaper:bowp:057 is not listed on IDEAS
  2. Klaus Meyer, 2005. "Foreign Direct Investment in Emerging Economies," Papers Presented at Global Meetings of the Emerging Markets Forum, Emerging Markets Forum 2005fdiee, Emerging Markets Forum.
  3. Philippe Kohler, 2004. "The Welfare Cost of Tariff Protection in the Balkan Countries," wiiw Balkan Observatory Working Papers, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw 57, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
  4. João Emílio Padovani Gonçalves, 2004. "Transbordamentos de Produtividade na Indústria Brasileira: evidências empíricas 1997-2000," Anais do XXXII Encontro Nacional de Economia [Proceedings of the 32th Brazilian Economics Meeting], ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pósgraduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of G 057, ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pósgraduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of Graduate Programs in Economics].
  5. Hamida, Lamia Ben, 2013. "Are there regional spillovers from FDI in the Swiss manufacturing industry?," International Business Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 754-769.
  6. 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, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 167-179.
  7. Ben Hamida, Lamia & Gugler, Philippe, 2009. "Are there demonstration-related spillovers from FDI?: Evidence from Switzerland," International Business Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 18(5), pages 494-508, October.


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