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Le choix de la forme organisationnelle en matière d’investissement en R&D à l’étranger par les firmes multinationales:la contribution de la théorie des coûts de transaction; The choice of an R&D organizational form by multinational firms:the transaction costs theory contribution


  • Dhikra Chebbi Nehkili

    () (Université de Bourgogne (LEG/FARGO))


(VF)L’objectif de ce papier est d’expliquer le choix du mode de gouvernance des activités de R&D à l’étranger à travers la contribution de la théorie des coûts de transaction. Nous avons identifié principalement trois grandes formes organisationnelles en matière d’investissement en R&D à l’étranger : l’internalisation totale, les alliances en R&D et l’externalisation totale par le biais des licences unilatérales. Nous avons classé les déterminants du choix organisationnel en deux groupes : les déterminants comportementaux (opportunisme et rationalité limitée) et les déterminants liés aux caractéristiques des transactions (spécificité, incertitude, fréquence). Suite à une étude quantitative par le biais d’un questionnaire diffusé au prés de 769 firmes multinationales, nos principaux résultats montrent que le choix de l’internalisation des activités de R&D est favorisé en cas d’opportunisme des agents et de fréquence élevée des transactions, le choix des licences unilatérales est défavorisé en cas de rationalité limitée, de spécificité des activités de R&D et d’incertitude technologique et le choix des alliances est favorisé en cas d’incertitude commerciale.(VA)The objective of this paper is to explain the choice of the governance mode of R&D activities abroad through the contribution of the transaction costs theory. We identified three main organizational forms: the complete internalization, the R&D alliances, and the complete externalization by the unilateral licensing agreements. We have classified the organizational choice determinants into two groups: the behavioral determinants (opportunistic behavior and bounded rationality) and the transactional determinants (specificity, uncertainty and frequency). We conducted a quantitative study through a questionnaire sent to 769 multinational firms. Our main results show that the R&D internalization is chosen in case of opportunistic behavior and a high frequency of the R&D transactions, the unilateral licensing agreements are underprivileged in case of bounded rationality, specific character of the R&D activities and technological uncertainty and the R&D alliances are chosen in case of commercial uncertainty.

Suggested Citation

  • Dhikra Chebbi Nehkili, 2007. "Le choix de la forme organisationnelle en matière d’investissement en R&D à l’étranger par les firmes multinationales:la contribution de la théorie des coûts de transaction; The choice of an R&D organ," Working Papers CREGO 1071001, Université de Bourgogne - CREGO EA7317 Centre de recherches en gestion des organisations.
  • Handle: RePEc:dij:wpfarg:1071001

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. John Hagedoorn & Rajneesh Narula, "undated". "Innovating through strategic alliances: moving towards international partnerships and contractual agreements," STEP Report series 199805, The STEP Group, Studies in technology, innovation and economic policy.
    2. Oxley, Joanne E., 1999. "Institutional environment and the mechanisms of governance: the impact of intellectual property protection on the structure of inter-firm alliances," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 283-309, March.
    3. Ginarte, Juan C. & Park, Walter G., 1997. "Determinants of patent rights: A cross-national study," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 283-301, October.
    4. Pisano, Gary P, 1989. "Using Equity Participation to Support Exchange: Evidence from the Biotechnology Industry," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 5(1), pages 109-126, Spring.
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    More about this item


    formes organisationnelles; théorie des coûts de transaction; R&D; firmes multinationales; organizational forms; transaction costs theory; R&D; multinational firms;

    JEL classification:

    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
    • L24 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Contracting Out; Joint Ventures
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D


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