Multidisciplinary Insights from New AIB Fellows: Volume 16

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Table of contents

(19 chapters)
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Overview

Pages xi-xiv
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Abstract

In the aftermath of the global economic crisis, the pursuit of new perspectives and different growth models is imperative. One of the most significant trends of our time is the rise of Asia in the world economy. After centuries of Western economic dominance, China, India, and the rest of the East, alongside emerging economies more broadly, are beginning to challenge the West for positions of global industry leadership and underlying managerial philosophies and perspectives. In this paper, I review some key philosophical insights from Asia that have underpinned the success of many Asian businesses for generations, hoping that it will encourage more efforts – conceptually, theoretically, and empirically – leading the discourse on fresh new perspectives on business in emerging economies in general, and on Asian management in particular.

Abstract

A defining feature of international business is the necessity for people from diverse cultural backgrounds to interact and collaborate but intercultural interaction is difficult and may give rise to disagreement and conflict. I have been working on the dynamics that promote positive intercultural interaction in the international business context, and two streams of my research, one empirical and the other conceptual, are reviewed here. The first stream is concerned with fairness issues surrounding the pay disparity between locals and expatriates in multinational enterprises operating in China, which has implications for MNC operations in other emerging economies. My research has shown that the pay disparity is associated with negative reactions from local employees but some management practices associated with the relationship between locals and expatriates, attributions made by locals, and salient norms about the pay disparity can buffer such negative reactions. In this research program, the focus is not on the actual interaction between locals and expatriates. To address this gap, a conceptual framework is presented, which provides insight about the factors that contribute to positive interaction between locals and expatriates. This paper ends with implications for future research on intercultural interaction in the MNC context.

Abstract

This paper points out new directions for the deepening and broadening of the institution-based view, by drawing on three streams of research with which I have been involved recently: (1) outward foreign direct investment from emerging economies, (2) bankruptcy laws and entrepreneurship development, and (3) institution-based research focusing on Africa. Such deepening has been accomplished by enhancing our institution-based understanding of foreign direct investment with a focus on emerging multinationals, while broadening has been done both substantively by probing into the impact of bankruptcy laws on entrepreneurship development around the world and geographically by calling for enhanced research attention on Africa via an institution-based lens.

Abstract

The world consists of diverse and distinctive economic systems. Due to the unique historical, cultural and location-specific contexts embedded in each economy, a comparison of strategic behaviors across economies is unlikely to provide a causal estimate of the influence of these contextual factors on strategy–performance relationships. In this paper, I outline three approaches to researching multinational firms that address this dilemma. They include the multilevel, historical and variance-centered perspectives, all of which can help international-business (IB) researchers develop stronger theoretical foundations from which to explain why country-specific contexts matter in designing IB action and research.

Abstract

The concept of the “business model” is increasingly popular in the strategy literature as a way to outline an integrated approach to value creation, delivery, capture, and allocation. It addresses firm strategy but also the resources and capabilities needed to support that strategy and the structure needed to operationalize it. The global marketplace challenges our concepts of all parts of the business model, yet business-model concepts tend not to consider the effects of location or geographical dispersion on the viability of business models. The value of resources and capabilities to customer needs vary from country to country, forcing strategies to adapt. Institutional factors limit structural possibilities in global, regional, and national markets. Currency values, tax regulations, consumer protection and the like make capturing value for the firm and its network much more than simply designing profit margins into pricing structures. This paper offers an integrated but modular approach to the business model, applying concepts from international business studies to show that the very concept of business models as well as each part of the puzzle must be adapted to deal with much greater complexity in the relationships between the environment and the firm in the globalizing marketplace.

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Abstract

With competitive rivalry eroding traditional product differentiation, legally protected brands have gradually become one of the most prized assets of multinational corporations. The defense of domestic brand shares and the expansion of well-known brands into new foreign markets have become important tasks of corporate managers. Yet, to date, there is no clear recognition of this increasing role of brands in the economic theory of international trade. This paper explores the implications of strong brands for intra-industry trade, for Vernon’s product-cycle model and for international trade overall. On balance, the ascent of global brands is shown to raise trade in standardized products, exacerbate the shift toward intra-firm trade, and sustain the dominance by large centralized multinationals.

Abstract

In this paper we describe the evolution of the Uppsala model, which we see as a gradual substitution of economics-type assumptions with ones derived from the behavioral theory of the firm and from empirical studies of international firm behavior. We rely upon them to introduce a new version of the Uppsala model. To decrease the traditional focus on the activity of manufacturing and increase attention to the entrepreneurial and exchange activities of international companies, we renamed these firms “multinational business enterprises” (MBEs). We end with a plea to improve the relevance of empirical research in the international-business (IB) area by not only relying upon realistic assumptions but also performing longitudinal studies.

Abstract

Business history has long been recognized as providing an important dimension to international-business (IB) studies. Much of this historical work has focused on mapping historical growth patterns of multinational enterprises (MNEs) but there is also a growing literature on the long-term impact of MNE investment on host economies, and this paper reviews this research. The focus is primarily on developing-country host economies, and more broadly on the global distribution of wealth and poverty. The article suggests three major arguments. First, it is necessary to take a long-time horizon when assessing impact on host economies. Second, it is necessary to incorporate societal and cultural impacts alongside more traditional measures of economic impact. Third, there is weak historical evidence that MNE’s have had a substantial positive impact over the long run on the development of host developing economies. A hypothesis is suggested that, given adequate domestic growth-supporting institutions and human-capital development, developing countries achieve more sustained development from excluding foreign-owned MNEs rather than hosting them.

Abstract

In this paper, I review and evaluate the concept of subsidiary initiative, and I discuss how theorizing about the multinational corporation (MNC) in general has been informed by studies focusing on subsidiary initiative and related subsidiary-level issues. In the second part of the paper, I discuss some of the trends underway in the world of business that are influencing the nature and amount of subsidiary initiative observed in MNCs. Most of these seem likely to make subsidiary initiative more common, though some of them will favor externally focused initiatives while others will favor internally focused ones.

Abstract

In this paper, I review the concept of “institutional voids” that provides a way to understand the structure of emerging markets. These voids impede would-be buyers from getting together with would-be sellers, and hence compromise the functioning of markets. Entrepreneurs must respond to these voids. Their endeavors, however, are also the means through which the voids are progressively removed. I review my work on the contours of such entrepreneurship in many emerging markets, with the greatest research emphasis on China and India. I conclude with a focus on attempts to circumvent a particularly insidious class of institutional voids, those that prevent the marginalized two-thirds of the world’s population from participating in the economic mainstream. Cumulatively, my work calls for our profession to think more creatively and eclectically about our research and teaching in a way that displays greater contextual intelligence toward ubiquitous and socially costly voids.

About the Authors

Pages 239-242
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Author Index

Pages 243-251
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DOI
10.1108/S1064-4857201416
Publication date
2014-08-11
Book series
Research in Global Strategic Management
Editor
Series copyright holder
Emerald Publishing Limited
ISBN
978-1-78441-039-1
eISBN
978-1-78441-038-4
Book series ISSN
1064-4857