Unlocking the green door of regional development: the role of MNEs in greening local inventive activities
Sandro Montresor visits TIK to discuss a recent paper on the extent to which MNEs contribute to the regional specialisation in green technologies.
"Unlocking the green door of regional development: the role of MNEs in greening local inventive activities" is a joint paper with Sandro Montresor, Davide Castellani, Giovanni Marin, and Antonello Zanfei.
Drawing on the literature about the environmental effects of MNEs, and combining it with recent research on the geography of eco-innovations and on the ‘greenness’ of international business, we maintain that the regional effect of inward FDIs should be greater in sectors where the scope for environmental spillovers on a focal green technology is the greatest. We also maintain that these spillovers mainly occur in R&D-related FDIs, and that FDIs attenuate the path-dependence that the green-tech regional specialisation is expected to show.
Combining the OECD-REGPAT and the Financial Times’ fDi Markets dataset with respect to about 1,000 European NUTS3 regions over the period 2003-2014, we find that the cognitive proximity between the domains in which FDIs and green-tech specialisations occur does even condition their relationship. On the other hand, the focal FDIs appear to have different qualitative effects on the proximate green specialisation, in terms of business activities they manifest through and of their reinforcing rather than switching previous regional specialisations.