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Innovative Capabilities and Globalization of Chinese Firms: Becoming a Leader in Innovation Spaces

Författare Maureen McKelvey
Jun Jin
Förlag Edward Elgar Publishers Ltd
Förlagsort Cheltenham, U.K.
Publiceringsår 2019
Publicerad vid Institutionen för ekonomi och samhälle, Innovation and Entrepreneurship (IIE)
Språk en
Länkar e-elgar.co.uk
Ämneskategorier Ekonomi och näringsliv


In the modern economy, the competitiveness of firms depends upon their use of advanced knowledge for innovation as well as their ability to act globally. Western countries have long taken the lead in developing knowledge and transforming it into business and social innovation, but in recent decades, the Chinese economy is rapidly advancing. Chinese firms are developing innovative capabilities and engaging in globalization, which affects not only China but also the world. Therefore, our book addresses Innovative Capabilities and Globalization of Chinese Firms. Moreover, our book focuses upon only on a particular sub-set of Chinese firms, namely ones striving to become a leader in their industry, and primarily privately-owned companies. The Chinese firms examined here include knowledge intensive entrepreneurial (KIE) ventures as well as emerging market multinational enterprises (EMNE). Our focus is thus very much on those Chinese firms which already are – or are striving to become – world-leading in their technologies and markets, and which do so by their use of advanced knowledge for innovation as well as their ability to act globally. In our conceptualization, these firms are thus searching for market, technological and productive opportunities and accessing multiple resources through networks within an innovation space. The phenomenon studied is Becoming a Leader in Innovation Spaces. Our book thus answers an important underlying research question, namely, How do Chinese companies learn to innovate and compete on an innovation space in global markets, through searching for opportunities, developing innovative capabilities, and engaging in globalization? The purpose of this book is to bring together insights about the answers to this question, where chapters are written by a select group of researchers, based on their current research. Our book is relevant for researchers and advanced students, due to the range of theoretical and empirical contributions. Moreover, our book is relevant for entrepreneurs, firm managers, public policy makers, and others who are interested in learning about the Chinese experience. After the open and reform policy in 1978, public policy for the Chinese national innovation system could increasingly provide a more solid foundation to improve the innovation and globalization of Chinese companies. From a policy perspective, the Chinese national government as well as regional and municipal governments have invested much money into science, technology and innovation. Chapters in this book primarily examine recent decades, focusing on the structural transformation in the particular sub-set of Chinese firms. The aim for many of these firms has been to move the basis of their competitiveness from imitation to innovation, and to move from being a player on a home market to a global market. Analyzing the empirical phenomenon of the structural transformation in this part of the Chinese economy is highly relevant and topically. Clearly, China is impacting the global economy, such that Chinese outbound mergers and acquisitions (M&A) into the global market reached nearly $5 trillion in transaction volume in 2015 (JP Morgan, 2016). Chinese knowledge intensive entrepreneurial ventures are rapidly developing their innovative capabilities based on advanced technology, especially in industries such as pharmaceuticals, windmills and analytics (McKelvey and Bagchi-Sen, 2015). Successful emerging market multinational enterprises can be found in several industries, with prime examples being Alibaba and Huawei. Alibaba is a leading internet (e-commerce) company, and Huawei has become the largest telecommunications equipment manufacturer in the world. Chapter 14 analyzes the Chinese innovation system as part of a global innovation space, in order to help explain how China is affecting both Chinese and foreign companies. More abstract theoretical analysis is also required, in order to explain the empirical phenomenon. Chapters in this book draw from a range of theoretical traditions, including Innovation Management, Entrepreneurship, Economics, International Business, Strategy, and Economic Geography. Each chapter addresses the more specific research question of the respective author, drawing upon appropriate concepts and theories. We the editors have also developed and proposed a specific analytical framework, in order to bring together an understanding of how Chinese companies learn to innovate and compete on an innovation space in global markets, through searching for opportunities, developing innovative capabilities, and engaging in globalization. Even though each book chapter makes a specific contribution, our purpose is to also propose directions for future empirical work and theoretical development, based on this framework. Our analytical framework for understanding the rapid development of innovative capabilities and globalization as firms navigating innovation spaces is found in Chapter 15.

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