Fernando Kaname Westphal
Doctorate – Private and collective corporate political action towards innovation: antecedents and impacts assessment through a business simulation
Advisor: Prof. Dr. Paulo Roberto Feldmann
Comission: rofs. Drs. Renata Giovinazzo Spers, Rafael Ricardo Jacomossi e Marco Antônio Silva
Class: 217, FEA-5
Corporate political actions are based on interactions between companies and governments and are studied from different perspectives, among them, the assessment of internal and external conditions that explain the political decisions of the companies, known as antecedents of the political behavior. The study of the political actions towards innovation was motivated by the regulatory scenario of the Brazilian public policies of Science Technology and Innovation - ST&I, in particular, the regulation of the interactions between companies and governments. Thus, the objective was to analyze the effects of the firm's communication and antecedents on individual and collective corporate political actions, and its impacts on the private research and development investment. The literature review was built on previous studies of the antecedents of political actions, on the discussion of collective actions involving public goods and on the determinants of R&D investments. The literature on linear economic experiments with public goods and business games and simulation provided the methodological outline that allowed the adaptation and use of the BSS - Business Strategy Simulation (Mrtvi, 2012) as a research environment for conducting the quasi-experiment. The research was classified as quantitative and explanatory, and was conducted with 72 undergraduates of a business school at a public university. Participants of the business game decided over 11 rounds, totaling 575 valid observations. The panel data were analyzed using regressions models with fixed effects and instrumental variables. From an institutional perspective the results showed that even in the face of uncertainty and the problem of collective action, firm inefficiency, scarcity of resources and communication were important antecedents of individual and collective political action. The scenario in which these decisions were made had the following characteristics: a) relational political approach (increased frequency of interactions) that allowed access to the political market regardless of firm size; b) oligopolistic competition in which companies benefit from product differentiation, and c) absence of restrictions on R&D investments (free cash flow and property rights). Although the results suggest a rent-seeking behavior and firm inefficiency, there was an addionality effect between corporate political actions and private investments in R&D, that is, corporate political investments did not crowd-out R&D investments. The purpose of this thesis is to contribute to a better understanding of the political actions of the firms considering multiple decision alternatives (individual and collective) with implications for the design of public policies for innovation regarding the political behavior of firms in situations of imperfect markets. It is suggested, for future research, the development of models that incorporate the performance of political actions as well as the investigation of non-linear models in determining the private investments in R&D.
*Abstract provided by the author