Dual-edged tools of trade: How international joint ventures help and hinder capability building of Chinese firms

Li, Jing; Zhou, Changhui
October 2008
Journal of World Business;Oct2008, Vol. 43 Issue 4, p463
Academic Journal
Abstract: Forming international joint ventures (IJVs) with multinational corporations (MNCs) from advanced economies has been widely adopted by firms in emerging economies as an organizational approach to building up their innovative capabilities. In this paper, we emphasize that such an approach has both advantages (knowledge transfer from MNCs) and disadvantages (overdependence upon MNCs and reduction of innovation incentives) in the capability building of indigenous firms. Utilizing a longitudinal dataset consisting of 474 industries in China during 1998�2002, we find supporting evidence for the co-existence of the positive and negative impacts of IJVs. Specifically, we find that IJV presence has an inverted U-shape impact on innovative capabilities of indigenous firms; such an impact is stronger in industries with low (versus high) technology gap. We discuss the implications of our findings for research, managerial practice, and government policy.


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