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The delicate balance: Managing technology adoption and creation in multinational affiliates in an emerging economy

Xiaming Liu, Pekka Vahtera, Chengang Wang, Jue Wang and Yingqi Wei ()

International Business Review, 2017, vol. 26, issue 3, 515-526

Abstract: From a perspective of the resource-based view, this paper analyses the inter-connection between technology adoption and creation in affiliates of multinational enterprises (MNEs) in an emerging economy. Operating below the international technological frontier, multinational affiliates are more motivated to adopt technologies already existent from their MNEs than create new technologies, as the former already gives them competitive advantages over local firms. When technology creation is required, multinational affiliates will adopt further technology-based resources from their MNEs as they are unavailable in an emerging economy. As a result, technology adoption is a necessary but not sufficient condition for multinational affiliates to conduct technology creation. Given that networks are particularly important for working around institutional voids in the context of an emerging economy, this paper also investigates the different roles of R&D support from internal and external networks of multinational affiliates in technology adoption and creation. Hypotheses are tested and partially supported based on unique data from 465 multinational affiliates in China.

Keywords: Resource-based view; Technology adoption; Technology creation; Multinational enterprises; Emerging economy; China (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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