Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Papers in Innovation Studies,
Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy

No 2014/16: How Do Geographical and Organisational Proximity Influence the Relational Pattern of MNCs’ Global Innovation Networks: An In-depth Case Study

Ju Liu ()
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Ju Liu: CIRCLE, Lund University

Abstract: This paper explores the influencing mechanism of geographical and organisational proximity/distance on the intra-firm relations and external linkages in multinational companies’ (MNCs) global innovation networks (GINs). It adopts an in-depth case study method and employs social network analysis to study the relational pattern of the case GINs and to understand how the relations are organised and why they are organised in a certain pattern. It is found that the intra-firm relations of both case MNCs’ GINs are similarly organised in a global way. The external linkages in the two case GINs are organised in different ways (global vs local) which depend on the dominant knowledge is science-based or engineering-based. Two influencing mechanisms, namely complementary effect and conditional reinforcing effect, are found and discussed. Evidences in practice are identified.

Keywords: Global innovation network; MNC; Geographical proximity; Organisational proximity; Social network analysis

JEL-codes: D85; F23; L62; L63

28 pages, September 10, 2014

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