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Entrepreneurship and innovation initiatives among Asian multinationals: A cross-country analysis

Victoria S. Licuanan (Asian Institute of Management, Manila, Philippines)
Kaushik Sengupta (Zarb School of Business, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY, USA)
James P. Neelankavil (Zarb School of Business, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY, USA)

International Journal of Commerce and Management

ISSN: 1056-9219

Article publication date: 2 March 2015




The purpose of this paper was to analyze the level of innovation and entrepreneurial culture among Asian multinationals, especially as they face intense competition from large global companies. Past practices and the sense that Asian companies are followers rather than innovators have resulted in the persistent belief that these companies are not sufficiently innovative and do not support or promote an entrepreneurial culture. However, given the rapid development in Asian economies in recent years, it is useful to analyze whether such traditional views and practices are changing and whether employees in these organizations view innovation as a necessary tool.


The data for this study came from a survey of 193 executives (32.2 per cent response rate). The statements in the survey instrument were designed to measure aspects of three factors, namely, organizational philosophy, corporate support and human capital, for the practice of entrepreneurship and innovation in their companies. The results were analyzed through standard statistical techniques such as factor loadings, correlation analysis, analysis of variance and post hoc tests.


While Asian companies traditionally are viewed as followers rather than innovators in entrepreneurship and innovation, it is clear from this study that this perception is changing at least for the three countries in this study with the prevalence and continued growth of the globalized economy. While the main results show an overall trend of increasing innovation and entrepreneurship culture, there are some major differences among specific factors. Specifically, the three countries are not the same across all the factors. This could be partly attributed to the cultural differences among these countries. In conclusion, the implications of the results from this study add to the extant research in this area.

Research limitations/implications

One of the limitations of this paper is the sample, which is obviously restricted to three countries. In addition, some of the factors need further examination for a more complete understanding of their relationship to entrepreneurship and innovation. In addition, longitudinal analysis can examine the patterns in time-based trends for these companies.

Practical implications

The paper includes implications for Asian multinationals to achieve growth in a highly competitive global environment where their traditional “followers” mentality limits them from competing with global competitors who are practicing entrepreneurship and innovation.


For the first time, this study has shown that Asian multinationals are attempting to be innovative and use the corporate entrepreneurship as a means to compete with global companies.



Licuanan, V.S., Sengupta, K. and Neelankavil, J.P. (2015), "Entrepreneurship and innovation initiatives among Asian multinationals: A cross-country analysis", International Journal of Commerce and Management, Vol. 25 No. 1, pp. 67-83.



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Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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