Domestic vs. foreign plants: An empirical investigation
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A wide literature analyses motivations, forms, and evolutionary paths of foreign investments in manufacturing. A specific research stream deals with the configurations of foreign manufacturing subsidiaries, identifying their distinct roles. The theoretical perspectives of these contributions are heterogeneous; however, most of them assume that the configurations of foreign and domestic plants are different. This paper aims at testing this assumption through data of an international research project. The study compares domestic and foreign plants in a number of structural characteristics, highlighting some differences. Then, using clustering techniques, it identifies four clusters both in the ‘foreign’ and in the ‘domestic’ subsample and compares them. Finally, it analyses the distribution of domestic and foreign plants among the identified clusters. The analysis shows that the identified clusters are quite similar in the two subsamples but the distribution of plants among them significantly differs: the more advanced profiles are more frequent in the ‘foreign’ subsample than in the ‘domestic’ one.