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Leveraging knowledge and competencies across space: The next frontier in international business

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  • Mudambi, Ram
  • Swift, Tim

Abstract

Multinational enterprises (MNEs) are networked firms whose subsidiaries act as nodes embedded in a variety of local contexts. This allows them to tap into many local systems of innovation to access diverse knowledge bases and integrate them to create new competencies. Currently technology is altering our conception of space and forcing us to recognize that it is a multi-dimensional concept, incorporating geographic space, technological space and personal network space. At the corporate level, MNE managers need to understand comparative strategic management, constantly looking for arbitrage opportunities that arise due to differences in resources, capabilities and institutions across the local contexts. At the functional level, in order for the MNE to integrate knowledge from diverse geographic locations, managers must recognize that valuable knowledge resides in invisible communities of practice where narrow technological specializations, personal connections and information sharing are critical means of access.

Suggested Citation

  • Mudambi, Ram & Swift, Tim, 2011. "Leveraging knowledge and competencies across space: The next frontier in international business," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 186-189, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:intman:v:17:y:2011:i:3:p:186-189
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    6. Sah, Raaj Kumar & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1986. "The Architecture of Economic Systems: Hierarchies and Polyarchies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 716-727, September.
    7. Ram Mudambi & Pietro Navarra, 2004. "Is knowledge power? Knowledge flows, subsidiary power and rent-seeking within MNCs," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 35(5), pages 385-406, September.
    8. Tallman, Stephen & Chacar, Aya S., 2011. "Communities, alliances, networks and knowledge in multinational firms: A micro-analytic framework," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 201-210, September.
    9. Sjoerd Beugelsdijk & Philip McCann & Ram Mudambi, 2010. "Introduction: Place, space and organization-- economic geography and the multinational enterprise," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 10(4), pages 485-493, July.
    10. Álvarez, Isabel & Marín, Raquel, 2010. "Entry modes and national systems of innovation," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 340-353, December.
    11. Dellestrand, Henrik, 2011. "Subsidiary embeddedness as a determinant of divisional headquarters involvement in innovation transfer processes," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 229-242, September.
    12. Baptista, Rui & Swann, Peter, 1998. "Do firms in clusters innovate more?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(5), pages 525-540, September.
    13. Mudambi, Ram, 2002. "Knowledge management in multinational firms," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 1-9.
    14. Lamin, Anna & Dunlap, Denise, 2011. "Complex technological capabilities in emerging economy firms: The role of organizational relationships," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 211-228, September.
    15. Ram Mudambi, 2008. "Location, control and innovation in knowledge-intensive industries," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 8(5), pages 699-725, September.
    16. Asakawa, Kazuhiro & Lehrer, Mark, 2003. "Managing local knowledge assets globally: the role of regional innovation relays," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 31-42, February.
    17. Luo, Yadong & Sun, Jinyun & Wang, Stephanie Lu, 2011. "Comparative strategic management: An emergent field in international management," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 190-200, September.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Denk, Nikola & Kaufmann, Lutz & Roesch, Jan-Frederik, 2012. "Liabilities of Foreignness Revisited: A Review of Contemporary Studies and Recommendations for Future Research," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 322-334.
    2. Tippmann, Esther & Sharkey Scott, Pamela & Mangematin, Vincent, 2014. "Subsidiary managers’ knowledge mobilizations: Unpacking emergent knowledge flows," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 431-443.
    3. Luo, Yadong & Sun, Jinyun & Wang, Stephanie Lu, 2011. "Comparative strategic management: An emergent field in international management," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 190-200, September.
    4. Nicolai Pogrebnyakov, 2017. "A Cost-Based Explanation of Gradual, Regional Internationalization of Multinationals on Social Networking Sites," Management International Review, Springer, vol. 57(1), pages 37-64, February.
    5. Tallman, Stephen & Chacar, Aya S., 2011. "Communities, alliances, networks and knowledge in multinational firms: A micro-analytic framework," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 201-210, September.
    6. Schotter, Andreas & Beamish, Paul W., 2011. "Performance effects of MNC headquarters-subsidiary conflict and the role of boundary spanners: The case of headquarter initiative rejection," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 243-259, September.
    7. Jell-Ojobor, Maria & Windsperger, Josef, 2014. "The Choice of Governance Modes of International Franchise Firms — Development of an Integrative Model," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 153-187.
    8. Du, Juana & Williams, Christopher, 2017. "Innovative Projects Between MNE Subsidiaries and Local Partners in China: Exploring Locations and Inter-organizational Trust," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 16-31.
    9. Mauri, Alfredo J. & Neiva de Figueiredo, João, 2012. "Strategic Patterns of Internationalization and Performance Variability: Effects of US-Based MNC Cross-Border Dispersion, Integration, and Outsourcing," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 38-51.
    10. repec:hal:gemwpa:hal-00864324 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. George O. White & Orhun Guldiken & Thomas A. Hemphill & Wu He & Mehdi Sharifi Khoobdeh, 2016. "Trends in International Strategic Management Research From 2000 to 2013: Text Mining and Bibliometric Analyses," Management International Review, Springer, vol. 56(1), pages 35-65, February.
    12. Jones, Geoffrey & Pitelis, Christos, 2015. "Entrepreneurial Imagination and a Demand and Supply-side Perspective on the MNE and Cross-border Organization," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 309-321.
    13. Dellestrand, Henrik, 2011. "Subsidiary embeddedness as a determinant of divisional headquarters involvement in innovation transfer processes," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 229-242, September.
    14. Piening, Erk P. & Salge, Torsten Oliver & Schäfer, Sebastian, 2016. "Innovating across boundaries: A portfolio perspective on innovation partnerships of multinational corporations," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 51(3), pages 474-485.
    15. repec:bla:jomstd:v:54:y:2017:i:4:p:511-539 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Götz Marta & Jankowska Barbara & Główka Cezary, 2014. "How to Investigate Polish Clusters’ Attractiveness for Inward FDI? Addressing Ambiguity Problem," International Journal of Management and Economics, De Gruyter Open, vol. 43(1), pages 74-93, September.
    17. Lamin, Anna & Dunlap, Denise, 2011. "Complex technological capabilities in emerging economy firms: The role of organizational relationships," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 211-228, September.

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