Knowledge, Organizational Evolution, and Market Creation
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Knowledge, Organizational Evolution, and Market Creation

The Globalization of Indian Firms from Steel to Software

Gita Sud de Surie

Knowledge, Organizational Evolution, and Market Creation documents the emergence of the Indian multinational by looking at data from firms in the ‘old’ economy, such as those in manufacturing, steel-making, automotive components and heavy machinery and the ‘new economy’ such as software and biotechnology. The author provides insights on knowledge transfer, innovation and capability building processes through in-depth case studies in these industries and suggests that both entrepreneurship and distributed innovation are critical for the growth of firms globally.
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Chapter 7: From Paupers to Princes: The Emergence of the Indian Multinational Corporation

Gita Sud de Surie


As our desire is, so is our will. As our will is so are our acts. As we act, so we become. (Brihadaranyaka Upanishad) Based on the findings presented earlier, this concluding chapter develops a framework to explain how and why cross-border innovation occurred and how new Indian multinationals emerged and expanded overseas. The adoption of new technologies and matching organizational design transformed individual firms, and propagated changes in the macroenvironment, resulting in the creation of capabilities and a new location of excellence. In addition, the emergence of the Indian multinational ushered in sociocultural change and helped to legitimize entrepreneurship. Finally, the globalization of Indian firms also has implications for economic development. TOWARD A FRAMEWORK FOR THE DYNAMICS OF COMPLEXITY AND EMERGENCE: ASPIRATION ADAPTATION IN CROSS-BORDER INNOVATION Evidence from Indian firms in both ‘old economy’ and ‘new economy’ industries suggests that their interactions with foreign multinationals both as recipients of technology and suppliers of services enabled them to adapt to a changing national context and acquire capabilities necessary to participate in the global economy. Findings from various firms are used to develop a conceptual framework that maps the evolution of knowledge and capabilities and dynamics of multinational expansion. While explanations for the existence of MNCs abound, ranging from market power and collusion (Hymer [1960] 1976; Kindleberger, 1969), to technological evolution and its life cycle (Vernon [1966] 1979; Cantwell, 1989) existing internationalization theories rarely focus on dynamics of emergence of new ventures internationally (Oviatt and McDougall, 1994). Knowledge-based perspectives rely on...

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