مدیریت پرتفولیو اتحاد استراتژیک: چشم انداز کسب و کار بین المللی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|21899||2010||14 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||محاسبه نشده|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : International Business Review, Volume 19, Issue 3, June 2010, Pages 247–260
This paper extends the Integration–Responsiveness (Bartlett and Ghoshal, 1989 and Prahalad and Doz, 1987) international business framework of multinational companies (MNCs) strategies in order to explain the MNC's various approaches to managing strategic alliance portfolios. Our research shows that the alliance portfolios of MNCs differ significantly with respect to partner integration and partner heterogeneity. We argue that the choice regarding the management of alliance portfolios depends on the MNC's international strategy. The empirical results reveal the impact of local responsiveness through the partner heterogeneity, and the impact of MNC integration on the level of global partner integration respectively.
The increasing importance of multinational firms (MNC) and strategic alliances on the global business environment leads to the question of how the MNC's choice of international strategy impacts its alliance portfolio management. This paper extends the theory behind international strategy in order to explain why global alliance portfolio management differs from MNC to MNC. More specifically, we extend the understanding of how the needs for local responsiveness and global integration (Ghoshal and Bartlett, 1993 and Prahalad and Doz, 1987) lead the MNC to choose different types of partners and different levels of partner integration. The purpose of this paper is to propose a new theoretical approach linking a firm's international strategy and its alliance portfolio management. The study is motivated by three lines of argumentation. First, globalization is posing new management challenges due to the geographic dispersion of the MNC's value chain. This has resulted in the rise of new organizational structures (Barkema, Baum, & Mannix, 2002), ranging from focused MNCs to global alliance constellations. Leading MNCs are increasingly using alliances in globalizing markets to increase their competitive advantage (Dunning, 2004, Harbinson and Pekar, 1997 and Hoffmann, 2007) by cooperating with different types of players such as customers, suppliers, competitors and complementors (Brandenburger & Nalebuff, 1996). As such, the number of firms involved in cooperative relationships and networks has grown. For example, Vapola, Tossavainen, and Gabrielsson (2008) show that firms such as Nokia and Hewlett-Packard have alliance constellations that exceed four hundred members in the application development function alone. Further, given the scale and technology costs associated with global competition, many MNCs have focused on fewer activities internally and outsourced more to their partners (Barkema et al., 2002), thus cooperating more extensively with foreign firms. Contractor and Lorange (2002) forecast that alliances will play a major role in complex, interdependent and communicative globalizing markets. Second, the MNC's approach to managing geographical and functional differences via strategic alliances affects firm competitiveness, so any decision to partner rather than to develop a particular activity internally (Hennart & Larimo, 1998) is potentially consequential to the future success of the MNC (Dyer, 1996 and Gulati, 1998). There are numerous studies exploring the impact of strategic alliances on a MNC's performance, and it has been shown that co-specialization, complementary partnerships and access to knowledge spillovers provide important benefits to the MNC (Dyer, 1996, Gimeno, 2004, Hamel, 1991, Harrigan, 1988, Parkhe, 1993, Sarkar et al., 2001, Stuart, 2000, Teece, 1987 and Vapola and Seppälä, 2006). However, the focus of prior research in this area has been primarily limited to activity-based motivations, and there has been little research that addresses the impact of a firm's internal strategic orientation on its management of large numbers of external relationships. The MNC's performance regarding alliances is dependent on the overall management of the alliance portfolio rather than the individual alliance, thus placing the structure and strategic orientation of the alliance portfolio management at the center of phenomenon (Hoffmann, 2007). Third, as alliances have become increasingly central to MNC strategy (Lorange & Roos, 1992), firms have found themselves dealing with issues relating to the management of large alliance portfolios (Gulati, 1998). Consequently, Hoffmann (2007) argues that alliance portfolio management has become an important strategic issue. While there is a wealth of literature both within the international strategy (Bartlett and Ghoshal, 1989, Birkinshaw et al., 2006, Doz et al., 2001, Kogut and Zander, 1993, Prahalad and Doz, 1987 and Stopford and Wells, 1972) and the strategic alliance (Contractor and Lorange, 2002, Eisenhardt and Schoonhoven, 1996, Gomes-Casseres, 1996, Gulati, 1998, Harrigan, 1988, Khanna et al., 1998 and Ohmae, 1989) research streams there is less research explicitly examining the link between the two. Therefore, the theory explaining the phenomenon clearly merits further academic attention, including a strategic perspective drawing on international business theory. In sum, to investigate different issues related to optimally managing a large number of alliances, this paper asks if and how the MNC's approaches to managing alliance portfolios vary with respect to its international business strategy. The paper develops three propositions and a theoretical framework based upon empirical data collected from five in-depth case studies including extensive archival research. This study addresses the phenomenon from the focal MNC perspective at the corporate level. Corporate strategy defines which business the MNC is engaged in. Thus, research on the MNC's alliances, from a corporate level strategic perspective, allows the research to access questions of boundary setting. Consistent with the corporate level strategy perspective, the case MNC's alliances are analyzed at the portfolio level, aggregating the motive for and purpose of each individual alliance, reflecting the overall strategy of the MNC's alliances. Therefore, the unit of analysis is the MNC's behavior and management characteristics with respect to the alliance portfolio as a whole. In this paper, the MNC is defined as a multinational firm with significant tangible and intangible assets and hence the capacity to operate widely across the globe, with global learning as a critical source of competitive advantage (Bartlett and Ghoshal, 1989 and Doz et al., 2001). We define alliances as all types of cooperative inter-organizational relationships that create and/or protect competitive advantage (Doz and Hamel, 1998 and Hagedoorn and Osborn, 1997). An alliance portfolio is the set of all alliances that the focal MNC has with its external partners (Hoffmann, 2007). In this paper, alliances can range from equity-based joint ventures to alliance constellations.1 The remainder of the paper is organized as follows. First, we expand the theoretical framework of international business strategy to explain the MNC's alliance portfolio management approach. Second, we describe our data collection and methods. Third, we analyze the empirical findings and put forward three propositions. Finally, conclusions are drawn and future research directions are offered.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The aim of this research was to answer the questions whether and how MNC strategic alliance portfolio behaviors differ as a function of international strategy? Abiding to the empirical research design put forward by Eisenhardt and Graebner (2007), the emergent patterns in the data pointed at the significance of the MNC's international strategy in explaining the differences in alliance portfolio management approaches. Drawing on the international business management literature the study sought to extend the theory through the development of the Integration–Responsiveness framework beyond the confines of the boundaries of the MNC. The empirical study proposes that the I–R framework has explanatory power in describing the alliance portfolio management approaches. The theory development put forward in this paper is in line with the earlier research on the I–R framework (Bartlett and Ghoshal, 1989 and Prahalad and Doz, 1987). The development of alliance portfolio categories and the supporting characteristics of respective management approaches allow the extended I–R framework to cover the MNC network beyond its boundaries. A further contribution to the theory is the inverse global portfolio management case, a type not explained by the previous framework. The high operationalization of the constructs allows managers to assess their managerial approach with respect to their alliance portfolios. While it seems that there are clear benefits in mastering a transnational alliance portfolio management in that it allows for both integrated and responsive partnerships, it is also more demanding in terms of management competences and may require additional resources in order to be managed effectively. Subsequently, this paper suggests consistency between the MNCs’ alliance portfolio management approach and their overall strategic orientation. The study is subject to certain limitations. The theoretical sampling of case firms did not account for firm size or industry and focused solely on the case firm acting according to the demonstrated international strategy with respect to its alliance portfolio management. Thus the MNC's environment, and its position within it, can be put forward as further control variables in future research. The generalizability of the findings is subject to the constraints of multiple case based research. However, the overarching aim of the study is to build theory, a fact reflected by the selected methodology and its rigorous application. The resulting framework is a new extension to the theory that bridges rich in-depth case evidence with mainstream research. Hence, with future research the framework's propositions can now be deductively tested.