“The Political Behavior of Business Actors”
The case of Swedish MNCs and the EU
By Amjad Hadjikhani
Earlier, most researches were focusing on government’s role over MNC’s but in this article, Hadjikhani opposes this issue and proposes that there is a focal relationship between the government and multinationals. He primarily takes into account political actors and considers them as central to his study.
The main question addressed is how businesses behave when they interact with political actors. This is important because such activities can create winners or losers in the market by their effect on needed resources. To explain this, a 3-factor model: interactions (commitment to gaining knowledge, resource commitment and trust), objective (influence) and actor’s characteristics (legitimacy, type, size) is used.
It is stated that initially power supremacy lies with governments. Business actors then establish influential relationships to convince political actors to provide specific types of political support.
To further strengthen his proposition, the author has built a case considering the political behavior of 3 Swedish MNC’s (Electrolux, ABB and Ericcson) as they interact with EU politicians. Hadjikhani then discusses that the focal relationship is embedded in the group of entities representing business and political system with varying bases of legitimacy. The interaction between these entities is aimed at gaining direct resources or preferential rules.
Finally it is concluded that the more distinctive the idea causing interaction, the more specific is the relationship with the political actors. It is further stated that due to unstable political positions, ideas change rapidly thereby prohibiting long-term ...
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