Chapter 10: The Technological Relationships between Indigenous Firms and Foreign-owned MNCs in the European Regions
10. The technological relationships between indigenous ﬁrms and foreignowned MNCs in the European regions John Cantwell and Simona Iammarino University of Reading, UK and University of Rome ‘La Sapienza’ and IAI, Italy 1. INTRODUCTION The nexus between global and local processes has been investigated quite extensively by the literature of the most recent years. One crucial aspect of such a relationship lies in the creation and diffusion of innovation, which, more than other economic processes, shows rather complex patterns of distribution across space. Indeed, as emphasized by Dicken, ‘“global” and “local” are not ﬁxed scales; rather, they represent the extreme points of a dialectical continuum of complex mutual interactions’ (Dicken, 1994, p. 103). As a consequence, neither the orthodox approach – which traditionally considers both the (multinational) ﬁrm and the local system as black boxes whose behaviours are determined by exogenous factors – nor an entirely endogenous perspective – which tends to explain structure and growth mechanisms as the result of purely internal forces – seem appropriate to investigate the issue ‘global versus local’. Rather, structure and behaviour of the two ‘extreme points’ need to be considered within the context of their increasing interdependence, including both endogenous determinants and exogenous variables relevant to the analysis. The aim of this chapter is to examine how the particular corporate technological trajectories of multinational corporations (MNCs) have interacted with spatially speciﬁc resources for the creation of new competence in some of the leading regions in the European Union. In order to consolidate existing competences, it is...
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