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The organization of knowledge in multinational firms

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  • Gumpert, Anna

Abstract

Employees must learn about firm technologies to use them in production. Within multinational firms, knowledge can be acquired centrally, by managers at headquarters, or locally, by production workers. Local knowledge acquisition increases with the bilateral communication costs with central management, and decreases with local knowledge acquisition costs. This mechanism explains why multinationals foreign sales and their probability of entry decrease in the distance of a country from the multinationals home country, and why multinationals pay higher wages than comparable domestic firms. The selection into foreign destinations and the foreign productivity distribution of German multinationals are consistent with the models predictions.

Suggested Citation

  • Gumpert, Anna, 2014. "The organization of knowledge in multinational firms," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100332, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc14:100332
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Anca Cristea, 2015. "The effect of communication costs on trade in headquarter services," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 151(2), pages 255-289, May.
    2. Luis Garicano & Esteban Rossi-Hansberg, 2015. "Knowledge-Based Hierarchies: Using Organizations to Understand the Economy," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 7(1), pages 1-30, August.
    3. Schymik, Jan, 2017. "Earnings Inequality and the Global Division of Labor: Evidence from the Executive Labor Market," Discussion Papers in Economics 38385, University of Munich, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F21 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Investment; Long-Term Capital Movements
    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory

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