Keywords: Asia, China, industrial development, technological learning, private enterprises, interactive learning, economic reform, industrialising economies, technology acquisition, technology management
Technological learning in six firms in Southern China: success and limits of an industrialisation model
This article examines the creation of industrial enterprises and the basic models of firm-level technological learning behaviour of the last 20 years in China. Six case studies of technological learning and links to external sources of know-how from the South of China in the Pearl River Delta are examined. It is shown that the learning process that has been experienced in these enterprises is similar to that of other fast growing East Asian economies. Until now enterprises have been acquiring technology through external linkages with foreign clients that become their main providers of technology. A detailed account of the enterprises allows a typology of the external technological learning. It is claimed that the growth of the South of China lies in this 'external' interactive technological learning, as in other East Asian economies.