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Heterogeneous FDI in Transition Economies – A Novel Approach to Assess the Developmental Impact of Backward Linkages


  • Giroud, Axèle
  • Jindra, Björn
  • Marek, Philipp


Traditional models of technology transfer via FDI rely upon technology gap and absorptive capacity arguments to explain host economies’ potential to benefit from technological spillovers. This paper emphasizes foreign affiliates’ technological heterogeneity. We apply a novel approach differentiating extent and intensity of backward linkages between foreign affiliates and local suppliers. We use survey data on 809 foreign affiliates in five transition economies. Our evidence shows that foreign affiliates’ technological capability, embeddedness and autonomy are positively related to knowledge transfer via backward linkages. In contrast to what is widely assumed, we find a non-linear relationship between extent of local sourcing and knowledge transfer to domestic suppliers.

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  • Giroud, Axèle & Jindra, Björn & Marek, Philipp, 2012. "Heterogeneous FDI in Transition Economies – A Novel Approach to Assess the Developmental Impact of Backward Linkages," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(11), pages 2206-2220.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:40:y:2012:i:11:p:2206-2220
    DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2012.03.018

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    Cited by:

    1. Merlevede, Bruno & Schoors, Koen & Spatareanu, Mariana, 2014. "FDI Spillovers and Time since Foreign Entry," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 108-126.
    2. repec:bla:worlde:v:39:y:2016:i:12:p:1947-1973 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Ramona Jimborean & Anna Kelber, 2017. "Foreign Direct Investment Drivers and Growth in Central and Eastern Europe in the Aftermath of the 2007 Global Financial Crisis," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Association for Comparative Economic Studies, vol. 59(1), pages 23-54, March.
    4. Emanuela Todeva & Ruslan Rakhmatullin, 2016. "Industry Global Value Chains, Connectivity and Regional Smart Specialisation in Europe. An Overview of Theoretical Approaches and Mapping Methodologies," JRC Working Papers JRC102801, Joint Research Centre (Seville site).
    5. Carol Newman & John Rand & Theodore Talbot & Finn Tarp, 2014. "Technology transfers, foreign investment and productivity spillovers: evidence from Vietnam," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp440, IIIS.
    6. Franco, Chiara & Sanfilippo, Marco & Seric, Adnan, 2015. "What makes linkages "good" linkages? Firms, the investment climate and business support services in Vietnam," IOB Working Papers 2015.09, Universiteit Antwerpen, Institute of Development Policy (IOB).
    7. Suma Athreye & Sandeep Kapur, 2015. "Capital and Technology Flows: changing technology-acquisition strategies in developing countries," Birkbeck Working Papers in Economics and Finance 1511, Birkbeck, Department of Economics, Mathematics & Statistics.
    8. repec:sae:envira:v:49:y:2017:i:12:p:2718-2738 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Buckley, Peter J. & Munjal, Surender & Enderwick, Peter & Forsans, Nicolas, 2016. "The role of experiential and non-experiential knowledge in cross-border acquisitions: The case of Indian multinational enterprises," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 51(5), pages 675-685.
    10. Ha, Yoo Jung & Giroud, Axèle, 2015. "Competence-creating subsidiaries and FDI technology spillovers," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 605-614.
    11. Newman, Carol & Rand, John & Talbot, Theodore & Tarp, Finn, 2015. "Technology transfers, foreign investment and productivity spillovers," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 168-187.
    12. Kubny, Julia & Voss, Hinrich, 2014. "Benefitting from Chinese FDI? An assessment of vertical linkages with Vietnamese manufacturing firms," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 731-740.
    13. Magdolna Sass & Andrea Szalavetz, 2014. "R&D-based integration and upgrading in Hungary," Acta Oeconomica, Akadémiai Kiadó, Hungary, vol. 64(supplemen), pages 153-180, November.
    14. Winkler, Deborah, 2013. "Potential and actual FDI spillovers in global value chains : the role of foreign investor characteristics, absorptive capacity and transmission channels," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6424, The World Bank.
    15. Buckley, Peter J. & Munjal, Surender & Enderwick, Peter & Forsans, Nicolas, 2016. "Do foreign resources assist or impede internationalisation? Evidence from internationalisation of Indian multinational enterprises," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 130-140.
    16. Gauselmann, Andrea, 2013. "R&D Co-operation in European Post-transition Economies," IWH Discussion Papers 4/2013, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    17. Pérez-Villar, Lucia & Seric, Adnan, 2015. "Knowledge transfer in global supply chains: Multinationals in Sub-Saharan Africa," Kiel Working Papers 1994, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    18. Elisa Giuliani & Chiara Macchi, 2013. "Multinational Corporations’ Economic And Human Rights Impacts On Developing Countries: A Review And Research Agenda," Discussion Papers 2013/158, Dipartimento di Economia e Management (DEM), University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.
    19. Hasan Faruq & Michael Webb & David T Yi, 2016. "Institutions and Local Supplier Quality," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 36(4), pages 2291-2297.
    20. Petr Pavlínek & Pavla Žížalová, 2016. "Linkages and spillovers in global production networks: firm-level analysis of the Czech automotive industry," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(2), pages 331-363.


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