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Multinational Enterprises in Regional Innovation Processes

Empirical Insights into Intangible Assets, Open Innovation and Firm Embeddedness in Regional Innovation Systems in Europe

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Jan-Philipp Kramer

This book is positioned at the interface of research in economic geography and strategic management, combining topics like intangible assets (IAs), Open Innovation strategies of multinational enterprises (MNEs), and Regional Innovation Systems (RIS). A micro-approach to analyzing the innovation behavior of nine MNEs in two advanced European economies, Germany and the UK, was applied, which has revealed key channels through which IAs are enhanced in the innovation processes of multinationals and has described their spatial roots and impact. Moreover, the study presents a novel matrix of the regional embeddedness of MNEs and systematically classifies the case study firms. Finally, it shows that geographical proximity to RIS is important for Open Innovation and enables MNEs to strengthen their absorptive capacity.

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LIST OF TABLES ..................................................................................... XII LIST OF FIGURES AND MAPS ........................................................... XIV 1 INTRODUCTION ......................................................................................... 1 1.1 RESEARCH CONTEXT ........................................................................................ 1 1.1.1 Intangible Assets .................................................................................. 2 1.1.2 Multinational Enterprises ..................................................................... 4 1.1.3 Open Innovation ................................................................................... 6 1.1.4 Geography of Innovation ..................................................................... 7 1.2 OBJECTIVES AND GUIDING RESEARCH QUESTIONS .......................................... 8 1.3 OUTLINE ......................................................................................................... 10 2 INTANGIBLE ASSETS, MULTINATIONAL ENTERPRISES AND REGIONAL INNOVATION CAPACITY ............................................... 12 2.1 INTRODUCTION ......................................................................................... 12 2.2 INTANGIBLE ASSETS, FIRMS AND REGIONS ...................................... 14 2.2.1 Intrinsic Features of Intangible Assets and Levels of Analysis ......... 14 2.2.2 Intangible Assets and Firms: Taxonomies and Business Model Implications ........................................................................................ 16 2.2.3 Regional Innovation Capacity, Knowledge Creation, and Intangible Assets ................................................................................ 20 2.3 MULTINATIONAL ENTERPRISES IN REGIONAL CONTEXTS .......... 27 2.3.1 MNEs as Differentiated Networks ..................................................... 27 2.3.2 Global Innovation Strategies and Regional Innovation Systems ...... 29 2.4 DECODING INTANGIBLES: DEFINITIONS AND DIMENSIONS OF INTANGIBLE ASSETS IN FIRMS AND REGIONS .................................. 31 VIII 2.4.1 Organizational Capital ....................................................................... 32 2.4.2 Network Capital ................................................................................. 34 2.4.3 Human Capital ................................................................................... 36 2.5 CONCLUSION ............................................................................................. 38 3 OPEN INNOVATION AND REGIONAL INNOVATION SYSTEMS .................................................................................................... 40 3.1 INTRODUCTION ......................................................................................... 40 3.2 THEORETICAL BACKGROUND: WHAT ARE THE LINKS BETWEEN OPEN INNOVATIONAND REGIONAL INNOVATION SYSTEMS? ..... 41 3.2.1 Open Innovation ................................................................................. 42 3.2.2 Regional Innovation Systems............................................................. 48 3.2.3 Bridging the gap: Why Regional Innovation Systems are relevant for effective Open Innovation strategies and vice versa ..................... 52 3.3 WHAT DO WE KNOW SO FAR? EMPIRICAL INSIGHTS ON OPEN INNOVATION AND ITS ECONOMIC GEOGRAPHY ............................. 59 3.3.1 Firm-level research............................................................................. 59 3.3.2 Regional-level research ...................................................................... 64 3.4 CONCLUSION ............................................................................................. 69 4 INTANGIBLE ASSETS, MULTINATIONAL ENTERPRISES AND REGIONAL SYSTEMS OF INNOVATION IN EUROPE ................... 72 4.1 INTRODUCTION ......................................................................................... 72 4.2 INNOVATION IN MULTINATIONAL ENTERPRISES...

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