Multinational Corporations and Foreign Direct Investment Unsimplified: Avoiding Simplicity, Embracing Complexity

Overview

Foreign direct investment (FDI) and multinational corporations (MNCs)—for better and worse—play a large and growing role in shaping our world. The integrating thesis of this book is the inevitability of heterogeneity in FDI and MNCs and, accordingly, the imperative of disaggregation. Large companies doing business on a global basis increasingly dominate the production and marketing of the world's goods and services. The importance of these companies continues to grow while the debate about their nature and ...

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Overview

Foreign direct investment (FDI) and multinational corporations (MNCs)—for better and worse—play a large and growing role in shaping our world. The integrating thesis of this book is the inevitability of heterogeneity in FDI and MNCs and, accordingly, the imperative of disaggregation. Large companies doing business on a global basis increasingly dominate the production and marketing of the world's goods and services. The importance of these companies continues to grow while the debate about their nature and effects remains mired in a long-standing stalemate couched in strong black and white terms. Stephen D. Cohen seeks to reconcile this impasse by analyzing multinational corporations and foreign direct investment in an eclectic, nuanced manner. The core thesis is that an accurate understanding of the nature and impact of these phenomena comes from acknowledging the dominance of heterogeneity, perceptions, and ambiguity and the paucity of universal truths. This approach should contribute significantly to both a better academic understanding and a more productive policy debate of an increasingly important element of the world economy.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195179354
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 1/8/2007
  • Pages: 384
  • Product dimensions: 9.30 (w) x 6.30 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Stephen D. Cohen is a Professor in the School of International Service at American University specializing in international economic relations.

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Table of Contents


Abbreviations     ix
Introduction     3
Fundamentals
A Better Approach to Understanding Foreign Direct Investment and Multinational Corporations     11
Defining the Subject: Subtleties and Ambiguities     27
From Obscurity to International Economic Powerhouse: The Evolution of Multinational Corporations     41
Heterogeneity: The Many Kinds of Foreign Direct Investment and Multinational Corporations and Their Disparate Effects     62
Perceptions and Economic Ideologies     93
The Strategy of Multinationals
Why Companies Invest Overseas     117
Where Multinational Corporations Invest and Don't Invest and Why     148
Impact on the International Order
Effects of Foreign Direct Investment on Less Developed Countries: Vagaries, Variables, Negatives, and Positives     179
Why and How Multinational Corporations Have Altered International Trade     205
Multinational Corporations versus the Nation-State: Has Sovereignty Been Outsourced?     233
The International Regulation of Multinational Corporations: Why There Is No Multilateral Foreign Direct Investment Regime     252
The Case for Foreign Direct Investment and Multinational Corporations     283
The Case against Foreign Direct Investment and Multinational Corporations     308
An AgnosticConclusion: "It Depends"     332
Recommendations
An Agenda for Future Action     355
Index     365
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