The persistence and implications of Japanese keiretsu organization
This paper examines two important research questions: (1) To what extent have recent economic and regulatory changes influenced the Japanese inter-corporate network? (2) Have the patterns of firm performance fostered by the Japanese inter-corporate system remained stable, or has there been an evolution to more ‘North American’ performance profiles? Using hierarchical regressions to compare patterns of networking and firm performance with data from the periods 1987 to 1991 and 1992 to 1997, we find little evidence to support the existence of significant changes in the patterns and implications of Japanese industrial organization. We conclude that the keiretsu system remained strongly in place throughout the first half of the 1990s. Nevertheless, we suggest that the continued move toward globalization of capital markets in Japan and ongoing regulatory change may potentially impact networking and performance implications in the 21st century. Journal of International Business Studies (2003) 34, 374–388. doi:10.1057/palgrave.jibs.8400038
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