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Research Projects in progress


(Torsten Söderberg Research Foundation) 2011-2016

International Business Research in an Era of Global Spatial Reconfiguration: Corporate Restructuring in the Global Automotive Industry; The Disinvestments of GM and Ford and the Entry of China.
The project is a joint commitment for the entire CIBS group of affiliated researchers and comprises various aspects of the acquisition of Volvo Car Corp. by the Chinese Zhejiang Geely Holding Group from Ford Motor Corp in 2010. Annual workshops and seminars have been held in Sweden and China and have resulted in a number of chapters in edited books, articles in refereed journals and conference presentations (see publication list).
The latest workshop took place in Chengdu China, in joint cooperation with South-Western University of Finance and Economics, April 10th, 2015. Next workshop is planned for February-March 2016.


(Swedish Science Council - Vetenskapsrådet) 2011-2014

International Technology Transfer through R&D by Swedish TNCs in Developing Countries
The project has emphasized the phenomenon of colocation of R&D and manufacturing within MNEs, using an empirical material gathered through personal interviews with key decision-makers in 17 of the largest Swedish companies. Since these companies represent a high level of internationalization, their experiences have been considered to provide a suitable base for an enhanced theoretical understanding of R&D location among global firms in general. In particular, the project has been focused on the increasing role among R&D units in emerging markets to take responsibility for global R&D strategies and the developing of new technology rather than only being centres for local adaptation of existing technology. The project can be seen as a direct predecessor to the RJ-supported project on the globalization of R&D in multinational enterprises (see below).


(Anna Ahrenberg Research Foundation) 2014-2015

Gothenburg in Asia – Asia in Gothenburg
This project is connected to the preparations for Gothenburg 400 year- jubilee celebration in 2021. Its purpose is to throw further light of the mutually advantageous long-term commercial and cultural relationship between the City of Gothenburg and Asia, with a particular focus on the relations in China. Not only the traditional trade and corporate relations are focused, but also various kinds of personal migration and interchange, e.g. students, food and restaurants, joint public sector projects within the sister city collaborations with Shanghai. The idea is to demonstrate how the commercial relations between Gothenburg and Asia already in the 17th and the 18th century gave rise to a spirit of openness to the world that characterizes the city also 400 years later.

(Jan Wallander and Tom Hedelius Foundation (Handelsbanken) 2014-2016

Conceptualizing Firms’ Disintegration- A Process Perspective
The purpose of this study is to contribute to the strategic management research in general and to the M&A literature in particular by studying the disintegration process following a demerger decision between two previously merged firms. Through a multiple case study approach, the aim of the study is to develop a conceptual framework that increases our understanding of a disintegration process following the demerger decision. Applying a process perspective, the focus is on understanding the various challenges that managers face when working with the planning and not at least implementing a disintegration process. Furthermore, the study emphasizes the human-related aspects, i.e. the variety of reactions and experiences of both managers and employees involved in a disintegration process.


(Torsten Söderberg Research Foundation) 2014-2016

The Development of R&D Competence and Capability in Emerging Markets
An increasing number of multinational companies (MNCs) have realized that emerging markets such as Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) offer good preconditions to conduct research and development (R&D) activities in order to develop innovative products and services for their global markets to a lower cost. In order to leverage this opportunity, however, MNCs need not only develop the necessary local R&D competence and capacity, but also further need to integrate these new R&D units with already existing ditto elsewhere in the MNC; thereby enabling knowledge sharing. Applying a longitudinal case study approach, the aim of the project is to contribute to the literature on strategic and organizational behavior of MNCs by studying the efforts made and challenges experienced by several Swedish MNCs when developing R&D competence and capacity in India


(Bank of Sweden Tercentenary Foundation – Riksbankens Jubileumsfond) 2015-2017

The Globalization of R&D in Multinational Enterprises: A Need of New Theoretical Explanations

In earlier research, we have shown that the large multinational enterprises (MNEs) in Sweden probably are more globalised than similar MNEs from other countries. They have now the majority of sales, production and employment outside Sweden, where especially the emerging markets in Asia have become important. These geographical shifts are also visible in the R&D activities, where half of their investments now are made abroad, including in Asia and other emerging markets. The aim of the present study is to analyse the driving mechanisms behind this new trend of R&D globalisation in MNEs, where foreign R&D units increasingly are involved in the development of new technology for global, regional and local markets, rather than in their traditional role to locally adapt the parent corporations existing technology, and where co-location with manufacturing units is a main locational determinant. Together with increasing acquisitions of companies with specialised competence, this results in a more decentralized location pattern of the R&D units among MNEs. Of special interest will be to analyse how this effects the strategically important R&D the MNEs traditionally carry out in their home country. A study of how Swedish MNEs have globalized their R&D will generate internationally unique knowledge. The overall aim with the study is to generate new empirical and theoretical knowledge within a new research area, with relevance also for decision makers in the private and public sectors.

Page Manager: Maria Persson|Last update: 10/2/2015

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