Firm innovation strategies and integration into the global value chains: how does the local business environment matter?

Le Thi Ngoc Bich1, Hoang Bao Tram2, Doan Quang Hung2, Fillipo Marchesani3, Bui Quang Tuan4
1 Academy of Finance, Hanoi, Vietnam
2 Foreign Trade University, Hanoi, Vietnam
3 Università degli Studi G. d'Annunzio Chieti e Pescara, Chieti, Italy
4 Vietnam Institute of Economics, Hanoi, Vietnam

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Abstract

This study aims to unravel how different innovation strategies affect firms’ modes of integration into the global value chains. By applying the self-selection hypothesis and utilizing longitudinal data of firms in Vietnam on 27,664 observations from 2012 to 2018, we find that innovation strategies affect the probability and modes of integration into the global value chains. While firms that prioritize product innovation and research and development are more likely to export, those that focus on process improvement tend to sell more to foreign direct investment buyers. These relationships are influenced by the quality of the local business environment. The improved quality of the local business environment enhances the positive effects of these innovation strategies on firms’ integration into the GVCs. This enhancement effect is particularly important for small- and medium-sized firms. The findings suggest that to support firms in Vietnam to integrate into the GVCs, the quality of the local business environment must be improved and it could be done by enforcing public policies that are complementary to firms’ innovation policies.

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