External networks and geographic clustering as sources of MNE advantages: Foreign and indigenous professional service firms in Central London
This study combines the theories of international business and management with network theory in order to examines the networking activities of foreign affiliates. It focuses on a specific kind of network, which is taking place between firms based in geographic proximity. A comparative analysis between foreign and indigenous firms in selected professional service industries located in Central London is used as the analytical tool to isolate the networking attributes of firms in general from those that are unique to foreign affiliates and emerge as a result of their specific characteristics. The findings suggest considerable differences between foreign and indigenous firms in terms of their network behaviour. MNE internal networks appear partially to replace the advantages provided by external networks, acting both to diminish the MNE's need for external linkages and channel it into somewhat different directions.
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