مسائل فرهنگی مربوط به کسب و کار مالکیت معنوی شرکت های چند ملیتی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|16778||2005||21 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of World Business, Volume 40, Issue 3, August 2005, Pages 281–301
This paper will examine how intellectual property issues arise due to the influence of cultural origins and background in cross-border businesses. With this aim in mind, this study is contextualised within three inter-related research questions applying a case study strategy with 13 Chinese and US managers. First, the paper discusses what IP problems managers have encountered. Second, it focuses on why such problems have arisen, i.e. why these problems are related to culture. Finally, the paper synthesises how the interviewed managers endeavour to solve the identified problems. To conclude, the paper draws to the attention of international business managers and researchers the fact that culture should be taken into account when dealing with IP-related cross-border businesses.
Intellectual property (IP) refers to patents, industrial designs, utility models, marks, copyrights and other rights given to creators over the creations of the mind. The owner of an IP has an exclusive ownership over the creation for a certain period of time depending on the type of IP concerned (Yang, 2003). It has become an integrative factor and a significant dimension in the world business since the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement was signed in 1994. It is also progressively developing into a dynamic research field (for example, Apke, 1998; Bosworth & Yang, 2000; Clegg & Cross, 2000; Maskus, 2000, Nicholson, 2001 and Shore et al., 2001). The research attention that this subject has attracted has transformed it from an interest in legal studies only to a mainstream of concern and relevance to the business community and research. In the business study of IP, a noticeable void is the impact of national culture on cross-border IP activities and how firms pursue strategic solutions to associated problems. This paper aims to examine how culture matters in the process of cross-border business activities. The study is based on the case study of 13 Chinese and US managers working in the wholly-owned enterprises and their licensing firms in China. The US, as a home country and China, as a host country are chosen because they represent cultures at two extremes. As far as IP is concerned, the US is the most active advocator and staunch supporter of IP due to its leadership in technology advancement in the world and IP activities in China (Bosworth & Yang, 2002). With the overall aim in mind, the paper intends to answer three relevant research questions. What are the IP issues in the operation of the US subsidiaries? Why do different culture roots interfere with the functioning of the business activities? How do Sino-foreign managers mitigate such problems? Following Section 1 in this paper, Section 2 informs readers of some issues relevant to the understanding of the research aim, including the rapid establishment of the IP system in China, the forms and common characteristics of IP and the importance of IP activities from the US to China. The Literature and Current Research Setting section discusses the highly distinctive cultural dimensions between the USA and China grounded from different theories. This section also studies how previous research has answered the author's research aim and identifies the cultural elements that have had impact on IP. At the end of this section, the author, based on the review of the previous studies, justifies the current research and establishes a study framework. The Methodology section elaborates on the research strategy, data collection, the interviewees, confidentiality and analytical tools and validity. In the Findings and Analysis section, the paper reveals what IP problems exist, how these problems are associated with social-cultural origins, and how these firms find their managerial solutions. Finally, the paper concludes the findings, discusses the limitations of this research, suggests the directions of further research and provides managerial implications.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This paper has conducted a case study of Chinese and American managers to explore how culture matters to IP associated business, i.e. what matters to IP collaboration (Table 9), why culture is an influential factor (Table 10) and how the managers tackle the problems (Table 11). The results show that culture matters to IP associated internal and external management for the interviewed managers (Table 9). The internal problem is reflected in the managers’ attitude differences towards IP in general and towards IP contract. However, their major problems are mainly externally associated with IP licensing partners and non-partners. These problems, according to the managers, are curable if determination and efforts are made from relevant parties. Table options Table 10. Cultural reasoning of the IP differences Cultural factors Reasoning the differences Beliefs and ethics The beliefs form three reasons that directly influence the corporate differences in IP activities. They include Public ownership with the private ownership in transition of the Chinese managers vs. private ownership of the American managers Anti-elite and sharing attitudes of the Chinese vs. elite and non-sharing attitudes of the Americans Trust and respect based businesses vs. legality based business Social stratification ‘Follow the order’ super-sub hierarchy of the Chinese managers vs. responsibility individualised super-sub hierarchy of the American managers Language and communications Language does not contribute the attitudes and understanding difference, but they create barriers for IP activities. Moreover, lack of communications substantially contribute even exacerbate misunderstanding. Education The degree of education of the population is an influential factor for them to decide what IP activities should be conducted. It is difficult to link the education attainment and IP knowledge due to the specialisation of this area. However, IP education can certainly change people's attitudes towards IP. Table options Table 11. Strategic Solutions to Managerial Differences in IP activities Strategy Targeted problems Strategy 1 Be communicative The only way to solve ‘thinking’ differences of internal managers Strategy 2 Constant know-how improvement Extend restricted contract terms and maintain ownership and new technology Strategy 3 Licensing according to the secret and technological level Avoid the disadvantages of contractual licensing Strategy 4 Monitor licensing partners Prevent overrun and guarantee IP production quality Strategy 5 Tight and multi contracts Prevent wrongdoings and resolve problems upon occurrence, including payment, overrun and attitudes problems. Strategy 6 Ownership control Prevent and curtail piracy and early riders Strategy 7 IP education Increase corporate and national awareness of IP Strategy 8 Proactive, defensive and networking tactics to control Piracy Effective labelling, contractual control, narrow price gap, market monitoring, commercial settlement and acquisitions, and joint actions with government and other companies Table options The research shows that social-cultural factors are strong ‘why’ element to explain the conflicts inside and outside Sino-US collaboration. The interviewed managers also admit that political economy can also contribute to their differences, but such differences are not in the confine of this study and are only briefly summarised. First, Protestant work ethic principles emphasise individual achievement and legality as opposed to the collective integrity, harmony and social responsibilities in the Buddhist principle and Confucius Adalect. This well explains why Chinese managers are not as strongly contract binding oriented as US managers. This can also explain the licensing overrun and piracy problem as people perceive copying as an ‘elegant’ respect to the creators’ work. Second, managers believe that when a society is rigidly stratified, a person's individual creativity tends to be restrained and compromised to social hierarchy, i.e. they tend to be relaxed in individual achievement in order to respond to hierarchical cultural demands and social harmony. As far as the conflicts are concerned, it is not surprising to find out that Chinese managers are supportive to internal government rules and relaxed in the governmental interference on corporate management while the US partners perceive them unusual and even unacceptable. Thirdly, the discussion about language and communications exposes that Chinese and US managers, due to the language remoteness and the different cultural rooting, high and low contexts, do communicate less, thereby creating misunderstanding about IP problems. The degree of communications is important, particularly the continual need to check on mutual understanding of the meaning of words and their interpretation in a cultural context. Both sides should avoid making assumptions about the meaning, instead they should confirm that both parties understand the full implications of what has apparently been discussed and agreed. Moreover, language differences in themselves do not create a barrier for specific communication because of managers’ language ability. However, it does create hassle for IP activities, such as registrations and piracy, for example, the Chinese version of a trademark infringement. Finally, the overall level of education of the general public does have strong influence on the IP decisions, and high level of education may give people better understanding about IP. However it certainly is not an indicator about people's awareness of IP for which IP education can enhance. The managers also explain that some organised counterfeiting, deliberate registrations of others’ work and licensing overrun have no links with culture, but are much driven by greed showing these people's disrespect to others’ creativity. Such attitudes may also be linked with their anti-capitalist sentiments, which may be associated with the influence of Maoism.