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International Entrepreneurship in the Life Sciences

International Entrepreneurship in the Life Sciences

Edited by Marian V Jones, Colin Wheeler and Pavlos Dimitratos

In this thought-provoking book, leading experts explore why international entrepreneurship is important to the life sciences industry. From multi-disciplinary and cross-national perspectives, they question why international entrepreneurship scholars might usefully invest interest in research focused on one specific industry context.

Chapter 9: Rapid Internationalization and Sustained Competitive Advantage in US and UK Life Science International New Ventures: A Resource-based View

Karl Warner and Jon Carrick

Subjects: business and management, entrepreneurship, international business, environment, biotechnology, innovation and technology, biotechnology, technology and ict


Karl Warner and Jon Carrick INTRODUCTION The resource-based view (RBV) holds that resources are the basis of what firms use to build competitive advantage (Barney, 1991; Grant, 1991a; Grant, 1991b; Wernerfelt, 1984). The RBV has been shown to be a useful lens through which to study firm growth in the life sciences (Yeoh and Roth, 1999) and in international entrepreneurship (IE) (Oviatt and McDougall, 1994; Peng, 2001; Westhead, Wright & Ucbasaran, 2001). This chapter is devoted to applying the RBV as a lens to study life science international new ventures (INVs) to gain deeper understanding of rapid internationalization and how competitive advantage is sustained. Oviatt and McDougall (1994, p. 49) define an INV as ‘a business organization that, from inception, seeks to derive a significant competitive advantage from the use of resources and the sale of outputs in multiple countries’. In the simplest terms, life science is the study of life (Owen-Smith, 2003). By way of definition, the life science industry is described as: encompassing biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, associated research and development activities and life sciences support infrastructure – including research universities, teaching hospitals, medical laboratories, venture capital firms and many other related sectors – it is one of the most knowledge-intensive and research-rich sectors of the U.S. economy. DeVol et al. (2005, p. 1) The intention of our research is therefore to utilize the RBV framework set out by Hitt, Ireland and Hoskisson (2005) to explore the rapid 175 M2698 - JONES TEXT.indd 175 17/08/2011 10:40 176 International entrepreneurship in...

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