Venturing Abroad: Innovation by U.S. Multinationals

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Venturing Abroad could not have been written at a more opportune time. A major theme of the book is that, not only is innovation crucial for U.S. multinationals to survive competition abroad, but that such innovation is increasingly being effected in U.S. subsidiaries overseas following the lead of most Western European multinationals and, to a lesser degree, their Japanese counterparts. Another recurring theme in the book is that the nature of the innovation itself, be it incremental or breakthrough innovation, defensive versus proactive, is important in determining the ability to survive global competition...Schuller has clearly addressed a crucial set of issues in international business, namely issues involving innovation process and the consequent competitive implications for multinational firms. Journal of International Business Studies Venturing Abroad is a comprehensive, research-based analysis of how U.S. corporations are competing with foreign multinationals in the area of technological innovation. Based on the author's personal survey research and on extensive interviews with top management in major U.S. multinational firms, Venturing Abroad not only shows what corporations are doing in response to the competitive threat from abroad, but also suggests new, relatively untried strategies for dealing with it. Schuller shows how U.S. firms are beginning to respond to competitive pressures by infusing their overseas subsidiaries with an entrepreneurial spirit once reserved exclusively for U.S. markets. Further, he demonstrates, U.S. headquarters are relying on these subsidiaries to identify, direct, research, and develop innovations addressed to the specific needs and demands of the markets they serve. Schuller argues that the successful experience of large multinationals who have adopted this proactive strategy offers a wealth of lessons applicable to other firms in similar positions.