New forms of organisation and R&D internationalisation among the world's 100 largest food and beverages multinationals
This paper explores the strategic internationalisation of Research and Development (R&D) activities of the world's 100 largest food and beverages (F&B) multinationals (MNEs) in 1996 and 2000 with a sample of nearly 8000 affiliates for each period. We develop a global innovation strategy (GIS) structure where we analyse the R&D internationalisation process of F&B MNEs. We argue that in a fully developed GIS model the sourcing of creative inputs does not come exclusively from a [`]central' R&D laboratory, but other overseas R&D laboratories or technological affiliates can also undertake genuine knowledge creation activity from capitalising on the scientific heterogeneity fostered in individual host countries as well as distinctive demand conditions. Our results indicate the increasing importance of overseas technological affiliates in the application of a GIS in the leading F&B MNEs, which determine the degree of their technological internationalisation. Two variants of technological affiliates reflect two broad knowledge-related activities, i.e. adaptation and genuine forms of knowledge creation.
Food and beverages Multinational enterprises Research and Development Foreign affiliates
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