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Stay local or go global?

Does expanding research and development activity to international markets affect business productivity?

Internationalisation is rapidly reshaping the global economic landscape. Marketing, production, and supply chain management have traditionally been business activities that are frequently globalised.

However, it is now becoming increasingly common for businesses to offshore their research and development (R&D) activities to other countries. 

Through gaining access to global pools of talent and innovative ideas, businesses have the ability to identify new market and technology trends, support their operations activity, and adapt existing products and services to suit global audiences, all of which allows them to maintain their competitive edge. 

However, internationalisation of R&D does not come without its barriers to success. By entering emerging economies (that typically have weak protection of intellectual property rights, IPR), it is thought that some businesses are at risk of limiting their productivity performance.

A recent study carried out by Mario Kafouros, Professor of International Business and Innovation, and Head of Division of People, Management and Organisational at Alliance Manchester Business School, challenges this idea.

The research explores the positive effect that internationalisation can have on R&D activity and productivity, as well as acknowledging how performance can differ from business to business across weak and strong IPR protection countries. 

Read the full study authored by Professor Mario Kafouros here. 

Blog posts give the views of the author, and are not necessarily those of Alliance Manchester Business School and The University of Manchester.

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