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DIY: How internationalization shifts the locus of indigenous innovation for Chinese firms

Listed author(s):
  • Jiang, Marshall S.
  • Branzei, Oana
  • Xia, Jun
Registered author(s):

    We elaborate theories of indigenous innovation by explaining how internationalization choices help emerging market firms transition from dependence on external knowledge to self-reliance on internal knowledge. Using a 1998–2007 census dataset of Chinese manufacturing firms, we theorize and test the moderation effect of foreign equity and export orientation on the relationship between knowledge and indigenous innovation. We show that foreign equity dis-incentivizes, while export orientation incentivizes, investments in internal knowledge. We contribute by showing that internationalization choices may radically change indigenous innovation outcomes by shifting the locus of problem solving outside or inside the firm. Our study corroborates the negative direct and indirect effects of external knowledge on indigenous innovation at the firm level previously suggested by China-centric scholars but also shows how two types of internationalization choices may gradually relieve firm-level dependence on imported technology. We bridge the gap between Western research and Chinese thought and practice by introducing a do-it-yourself (DIY) explanation of how firms may implement China’s indigenous innovation (zizhu chuangxin) policy.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of World Business.

    Volume (Year): 51 (2016)
    Issue (Month): 5 ()
    Pages: 662-674

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:worbus:v:51:y:2016:i:5:p:662-674
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jwb.2016.07.005
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