IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Asset Specificity and the Political Behavior of Firms: Lobbying for Subsidies in Norway

Listed author(s):
  • Alt, James E.
  • Carlsen, Fredrik
  • Heum, Per
  • Johansen, Kåre

Previous research into endogenous trade policy has described extensively the political incentives of firms with specific assets, but no studies have shown directly that firms behave as predicted. We adopt insights from transaction costs economics to develop measures of asset specificity and to investigate how variation in these measures affects the political behavior of firms. In particular, we examine the lobbying choices of Norwegian firms in the 1980s. Given available subsidy funds from Norway's oil boom and some government decisions in the 1970s, firms with more specific assets faced potentially greater losses from adjusting to new activities in the face of competitive pressures and thus had greater incentives to lobby for subsidies to protect themselves. Joint contacting of Parliament and government on behalf of firm interests by representatives of both management and labor should be particularly likely where firms had specific assets. Data analysis shows that asset specificity, as indicated by R&D intensity and job immobility, predicts joint contacting independently of plausible alternative explanatory variables like firm size and export orientation.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
File Function: link to article abstract page
Download Restriction: no

Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal International Organization.

Volume (Year): 53 (1999)
Issue (Month): 01 (December)
Pages: 99-116

in new window

Handle: RePEc:cup:intorg:v:53:y:1999:i:01:p:99-116_44
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Cambridge University Press, UPH, Shaftesbury Road, Cambridge CB2 8BS UK

Web page:

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cup:intorg:v:53:y:1999:i:01:p:99-116_44. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Keith Waters)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.