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Power in the multinational corporation in industry equilibrium

  • Dalia Marin
  • Thierry Verdier


Recent theories of the multinational corporation introduce the property rights model of the firm and examine whether to integrate our outsource firm activities locally or to a foreign country. This paper focus instead on the internal organization of the multinational corporation by examining the power allocation between headquarters and subsidiaries. We provide a framework to analyse the interaction between the decision to serve the local market by exporting or FDI, market acces and the optimal mode of organization of the multinational corporation. We find that subsidiary managers are given most autonomy in their decision how to run the firm at intermediate levels of local competition. We then provide comparative statics for changes in fixed FDI entry costs and trade costs, information technology, the number of local competitors, and in the size of the local market.

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Article provided by Springer in its journal Economic Theory.

Volume (Year): 38 (2009)
Issue (Month): 3 (March)
Pages: 437-464

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Handle: RePEc:spr:joecth:v:38:y:2009:i:3:p:437-464
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  1. Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano & Alessandro Turrini, 2002. "Distance and FDI when Contracts are Incomplete," Development Working Papers 165, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano.
  2. Antras, Pol & Helpman, Elhanan, 2004. "Global Sourcing," Scholarly Articles 3196327, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  3. Marin, Dalia & Verdier, Thierry, 2002. "Power Inside the Firm and the Market: a General Equilibrium Approach," CEPR Discussion Papers 3526, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Rossi-Hansberg, Esteban & Garicano, Luis & Antras, Pol, 2006. "Offshoring in a Knowledge Economy," Scholarly Articles 3196323, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  5. Marin, Dalia & Verdier, Thierry, 2007. "Competing in Organizations: Firm Heterogeneity and International Trade," CEPR Discussion Papers 6342, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Hart, Oliver & Moore, John, 1990. "Property Rights and the Nature of the Firm," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1119-58, December.
  7. Marin, Dalia, 2006. "A new international division of labor in Europe: Outsourcing and offshoring to Eastern Europe," Munich Reprints in Economics 19229, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  8. Marin, Dalia & Verdier, Thierry, 2003. "Globalization and the new enterprise," Munich Reprints in Economics 19256, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  9. Diego Puga & Daniel Trefler, 2005. "Wake up and smell the ginseng: The rise of incremental innovation in low-wage countries," Working Papers tecipa-193, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  10. repec:hrv:faseco:4784031 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(3), pages 297-308, June.
  12. Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1997. "Formal and Real Authority in Organizations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(1), pages 1-29, February.
  13. Marin, Dalia & Verdier, Thierry, 2008. "Corporate Hierarchies and the Size of Nations: Theory and Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 6734, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Grossman, Sanford J. & Hart, Oliver D., 1986. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Scholarly Articles 3450060, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  15. repec:hrv:faseco:4784029 is not listed on IDEAS
  16. Ottaviano, Gianmarco & Melitz, Marc, 2008. "Market Size, Trade, and Productivity," Scholarly Articles 3229096, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  17. Gene M. Grossman & Esteban Rossi-Hansberg, 2008. "Trading Tasks: A Simple Theory of Offshoring," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 1978-97, December.
  18. Pol Antràs & Luis Garicano & Esteban Rossi-Hansberg, 2006. "Offshoring in a Knowledge Economy," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(1), pages 31-77.
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