This study suggests means by which Korea—a country that lacks a solid science and technology infrastructure—can gain competitive advantages in technology by using multinational corporations (MNC) in the global market, where technological innovation is accelerating.
Currently, a majority of global science and technology resources are controlled by MNCs. Research and development in MNCs tended to be controlled primarily by their headquarters. However, overseas R&D activities have increased since the mid- 1980s. In particular, there was a dramatic shift to a type of R&D designed to improve headquarters’ technological capabilities by using local capability in science and technology. This shift resulted decisions being made by MNCs on direction, scale, methods, and location of R&D, and it affects the global economy significantly.
Korean MNCs achieved remarkable scientific and technological development in the 1990s by changing their R&D strategies from being imitative to being defensive in the late 1980s. Based on their achievements, overseas production, localization in overseas markets, and the number of overseas research centers greatly increased. However, since Korea’s overseas production accounts for a low proportion of total production, and as Korean overseas subsidiaries lack management resources, it is expected to take several decades for Korea to reach the technological level of European MNCs.
To survive in a world where technological innovation continues to accelerate, Korea’s domestic science and technology relatively underdeveloped infrastructure should be taken into account. There is also a need for a strategy that will help Korea to actively utilize R&D networks of Korean MNCs in order to effectively employ technologically developed countries’ scientific and technological resources for establishment of a national innovation system.
연구개발의 세계화 지역화와 기술혁신정책(Globalization and localization of R&D and policy for technological innovation)
|Series Title; No||연구보고서 / 98-01|
|Subject Country||South Korea(Asia and Pacific)|
|Subject||Industry and Technology < General|
|Holding||KDI; KDI School|