Kumulative Dissertation


Technological Capability Generation in China’s High-tech Industries - Experiences from China's Mobile Phone Industry

Titel (englisch)


Jin, Jun

2. Autor/Autorin




Hangzhou, China


Schlagwörter (GND)

China; Technologiemanagement; Technologietransfer; Elektrotechnische Industrie; Handy

DDC (Dewey Decimal Classification)

Sozialwissenschaften - 300

Freie Stichwörter (deutsch)

Industrie; Handy; Telekommunikationsindustrie; Informationswirtschaft

Freie Stichwörter (englisch)

technological capability; mobile phone industry; China; information and communication industry


Kurzfassung (englisch)

The development of technological capabilities (TC) is critical for companies in emerging countries to survive and succeed in competitive business worldwide. Technology transfer (TT) is important in the process of technological capability development. Technological capability development and technology transfer have attracted extensive attention not only from academics, but also from business managers and government officials. However, the research on the TC development process in high-tech industries and such research on Chinese manufacturers are not adequate. In addition, practical evidence does not fully support previous research results, such as Kim’s three-stage model and the determinants of TC development.
The purpose of this dissertation is to explore the process of technological capability development in Chinese high-tech industries and to identify the key factors in this process. The dissertation selected four Chinese mobile phone manufacturers for in-depth analyses on the TC development process in Chinese high-tech industries.
This research reveals that the TC development process in Chinese high-tech industries is a process of acquiring technology in an established external alliance network and diffusing acquired technology internally with intensive efforts. With the development of technology and industry, technology transfer has taken place in alliance networks. Effective intra-firm technology diffusion under extensive internal efforts has a positive effect on the technological capability improvement of a company.
Additionally, my research results indicate that the process of TC development is influenced by the nature of technology (which contains the complexity, uncertainty and monopoly of technology), the industry value network, the diffusion of ICT, and the absorptive capacity. Furthermore, Kim’s three-stage TC development model is extended to a four-stage TC development model with a complementary stage of recessive technology. Moreover, a technological capability development routine model based on the R&D capability and marketing capability is formulated in this dissertation.
This research contributes to the deep understanding of the process of technological capability development in Chinese high-tech industries and the determinants in this process. This will help companies in other countries, particularly companies in high-tech industries, to develop the proper strategy for the Chinese market.
Additionally, this dissertation provides new insights into the theories of technological capability development and technology management. The new findings suggest that managers and government officers should modify others’ experience with their indigenous characteristics when they develop the technology development strategies. The research results concerning FDI suggest that the Chinese government and other emerging countries should strike a balance between the national acquisition of foreign capital and the company’s acquisition of more supports to develop indigenous technological capability.
The four-stage TC development model suggests that technology managers should use different methods to manage different phases of technologies. This four-stage model also indicates that companies in China in particular, in emerging countries in general, would have more opportunities in growing and emerging technologies to develop technological capability and compete with MNCs in the world.
The research results suggest that MNCs as the dominant part of suppliers should rethink the role of recipients in technology transfer to find a balance between the benefits of technology transfer and protection of intellectual property rights. Furthermore, this research reveals that companies in developed countries need to consider cooperation with companies in emerging countries to develop the emerging technology.


Universität St.Gallen


Chong, Li Choy (Prof. Dr.)


Zedtwitz, Maximilian von (Prof. Dr.)

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