John H. Dunning
In considering the origin, form, and global spread of the value-added activities of multinational enterprises (MNEs) over the past four decades, this chapter traces the main thrust and content of two influential strands of literature.
The two strands are closely inter-related. The first examines the development of scholarly thought on the determinants of the ownership, sectoral pattern, and geographical scope of MNE activity; and the second, the main changes in the external technological, economic, and political environment that, in part at least, have helped fashion these explanations. In identifying and reviewing both literatures, and the interface between them, we shall consider three main time periods, viz. the 1960s to the mid 1970s, the mid 1970s to the late 1980s, and the late 1980s to the turn of the century.
We shall present only the broad statistical trends of MNE activity in the text of this chapter, but for a comprehensive data review of the changing profile of