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Evolving learning strategies for latecomers

Evolving learning strategies for latecomers Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the rise and the fall of China's local handset manufacturers, to explore the issue of how learning strategies of latecomers evolve in relation to changing environmental features and their own technology accumulation. Design/methodology/approach – The paper employs a case study approach. Findings – As latecomers approach technology frontiers, learning strategies need to change timely. After latecomers gain their initial foothold in the domestic market, R&D and innovation capabilities become vital for maintaining their margins and sustaining their growth. This paper illustrates that latecomers should use the relatively strong case flow for their long‐term efforts on innovative capability building, which were generated from their initial market success. Originality/value – This paper provides a systematic analysis on the rise and the fall of China's local handset manufacturers, less addressed by previous studies. This paper has following contributions: it identifies factors contributing to the rise and the fall of China's local handset manufacturers. These findings will act as an effective checklist for Chinese managers to design competitive strategies against multinationals. Second, it identifies that distribution channels can act as a source of competitive advantages for latecomers to compensate for their technology disadvantages at early stage. It is less addressed by previous studies in the field of technological learning. This finding may be of interest to managers in large catching‐up countries with home market advantages such as India, Brazil, Mexico and Indonesia. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Technology Management in China Emerald Publishing

Evolving learning strategies for latecomers

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1746-8779
DOI
10.1108/17468770810881095
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the rise and the fall of China's local handset manufacturers, to explore the issue of how learning strategies of latecomers evolve in relation to changing environmental features and their own technology accumulation. Design/methodology/approach – The paper employs a case study approach. Findings – As latecomers approach technology frontiers, learning strategies need to change timely. After latecomers gain their initial foothold in the domestic market, R&D and innovation capabilities become vital for maintaining their margins and sustaining their growth. This paper illustrates that latecomers should use the relatively strong case flow for their long‐term efforts on innovative capability building, which were generated from their initial market success. Originality/value – This paper provides a systematic analysis on the rise and the fall of China's local handset manufacturers, less addressed by previous studies. This paper has following contributions: it identifies factors contributing to the rise and the fall of China's local handset manufacturers. These findings will act as an effective checklist for Chinese managers to design competitive strategies against multinationals. Second, it identifies that distribution channels can act as a source of competitive advantages for latecomers to compensate for their technology disadvantages at early stage. It is less addressed by previous studies in the field of technological learning. This finding may be of interest to managers in large catching‐up countries with home market advantages such as India, Brazil, Mexico and Indonesia.

Journal

Journal of Technology Management in ChinaEmerald Publishing

Published: May 30, 2008

Keywords: China; Innovation; Productive capacity; Technology led strategy; Newly industrialized economies

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