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Fostering Dynamic Capabilities of SMEs. The Impact of Inward International Licensing on Absorptive Capacity and Networking Capability: A Multiple Case Study in Pharmaceutical Industry
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
2014 (English)Licentiate thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Resource limitation and inadequate capabilities are the SME’s major problems. On this basis, alliances as vehicles of inter-firm collaboration provide opportunities for SMEs to obtain complementary capabilities and critical resources to overcome resource limitations. In this respect, examining the extant literature on non-equity strategic alliances shows that very few studies have empirically examined the impact of these alliances, such as inward international licensing (IIL) on SMEs’ dynamic capabilities (e.g. absorptive capacity and networking capability) in developing context. Consequently, to close this research gap, the purpose of this study is to examine and explore the major impacts of inward international licensing (IIL) on dynamic capabilities of SMEs, with focus on absorptive capacity (ACAP) and networking capability (NC) in a developing economy context (Iran).

This study is focused on pharmaceutical SMEs involved in international business activities through inward international licensing (IIL). The study is explorative, qualitative and elaborative in nature. The dominant analytical approach in this study was abductive. Given the research type (nature), a multiple-case study was selected as an appropriate research strategy to achieve the research purpose and objectives. All cases were selected purposefully. The data were collected from four pharmaceutical SMEs (licensees) with licenses from European pharmaceutical largescale enterprises (LSEs). The results of the first part of this study reveal that in all cases studied, inward international licensing (IIL) has a strong effect on absorptive capacity (ACAP) and networking capability (NC). In this regard, all absorptive factors (AFs), namely acquisition, assimilation, transformation, and exploitation, have been enhanced by influenced contextual factors (CFs) of ACAP. The SMEs’ management and strategy, human resources, internal knowledge, and inter and intra-firm relationships, as several contextual factors (CF) of ACAP, have been forcefully influenced by inward international licensing (IIL). The second part of the empirical results indicates that the international licensing alliance between SMEs and LSEs helps the development of SMEs’ networking capability as well. This was particularly significant in development of the main components of networking capability, such as relationship initiation capability (RIC) and relationship developing capability (RDC).

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2014. , 132 + 2 Appendices p.
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Thesis, ISSN 0280-7971 ; 1653
Keyword [en]
Absorptive capacity, networking capability, inward international licensing, dynamic capabilities, SMEs, Iran
National Category
Engineering and Technology
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-105471DOI: 10.3384/lic.diva-105471Local ID: LiU-TEK-Lic 2014:86ISBN: 978-91-7519-362-5 (print)OAI: diva2:707586
2014-04-24, ACAS, A-House, Campus Valla, Linköpings universitet, Linköping, 13:00 (English)
Available from: 2014-03-25 Created: 2014-03-25 Last updated: 2014-04-25Bibliographically approved

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Saeedi, Mohammad Reza
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