The internationalization of innovation towards the South: a historical case study of a global pharmaceutical corporation in China (1993-2017)

Article


Zhao, S., Tan, H., Papanastassiou, M. and Harzing, A. 2020. The internationalization of innovation towards the South: a historical case study of a global pharmaceutical corporation in China (1993-2017). Asia Pacific journal of management. 37 (2), pp. 553-585. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10490-018-9620-x
TypeArticle
TitleThe internationalization of innovation towards the South: a historical case study of a global pharmaceutical corporation in China (1993-2017)
AuthorsZhao, S., Tan, H., Papanastassiou, M. and Harzing, A.
Abstract

Intensified competition means that multinational enterprises (MNEs) are increasingly concerned with locating innovation activities in the most appropriate locations. This had led to emerging economies in the South becoming an important destination of R&D-related foreign direct investment (FDI), departing from their traditional role as low-cost production sites. Thus far, however, our understanding of this transformation process is limited. The purpose of this article is therefore to explore the process by which foreign MNEs’ low-value-adding operations in the South are transformed into high-value- adding R&D operations. Drawing on the current literature, we construct a framework of evolution consisting of four major waves of R&D internationalization and corresponding R&D objectives. To better understand how these waves have evolved over time, we focus on the South and trace the process of change using a single historical case study: AstraZeneca in China between 1993 and 2017. We find evidence of idiosyncratic location-bound conditions offering both opportunities and resources. The gradual development of these favourable conditions, along with AstraZeneca’s deepening local knowledge, triggered a transformation process in their operations in China. Our study thus offers important historical insights, which present a platform for future research providing more nuanced theoretical explanations of the four waves of R&D internationalization.

Research GroupInternational Business group
LanguageEnglish
PublisherSpringer
JournalAsia Pacific journal of management
ISSN0217-4561
Electronic1572-9958
Publication dates
Online02 Jan 2019
Print30 Jun 2020
Publication process dates
Deposited29 Aug 2018
Accepted27 Aug 2018
Output statusPublished
Accepted author manuscript
Copyright Statement

This version of the article has been accepted for publication, after peer review and is subject to Springer Nature’s AM terms of use (https://www.springernature.com/gp/open-research/policies/accepted-ma... ), but is not the Version of Record and does not reflect post-acceptance improvements, or any corrections. The Version of Record is available online at:: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10490-018-9620-x

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1007/s10490-018-9620-x
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