1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
The resource-based views and ideologies
has in modern times form the basis for the competitive advantage of a
firm. This lies primarily in the application of a bundle of valuable
tangible or intangible resources at the firm's disposal (Wernerfelt,
1984; Rumelt, 1984; Penrose, 1959). To transform a short-run competitive
advantage into a sustained competitive advantage requires that these
resources which are heterogeneous in nature and not perfectly mobile
(Peteraf, 1993). Effectively, this translates into valuable resources
that are neither perfectly imitable nor substitutable without great
effort through inter-firm cooperation (Barney, 1991).
Cooperation between firms has become an
important tool in facing the pressures of increasing global competition,
and in enhancing technological capability and innovativeness. Such
cooperation takes place not only between firms from developed countries,
but also in the context of inter-firm relations and between firms
located in the same country as well as those located in different
countries. Collaboration among firms may also take a variety of
different forms ranging from strategic alliances to technology
partnerships, incubators or technology poles’, knowledge networks,
licensing, franchising, and to vertical or horizontal subcontracting.
Cooperation may involve firms in close
proximity to each other, such as those located in growth triangles’, or
those which have clustered in specific locations overtime. Inter-firm
cooperation is undertaken for a number of reasons: sharing of know-how,
joint action, building technological capacities, taking advantage of
local marketing skills, decentralizing to be closer to local markets,
building user-supplier networks, and taking advantage of knowledge
spillovers from location-based proximity. According to Teeter, et al
(2006), for the purposes of analysis of such inter-firm cooperation
activities, this study takes into consideration three broad categories
of such cooperation: clustering, networks and strategic partnerships.
Technically speaking, clustering is a spatial concept and does not
automatically imply collaboration among the firms so located.
Clustering, however, does appear to have a positive impact on enterprise
development and the role that inter-firm cooperation plays in this
process needs further study. Networking is most often used to describe
arms-length interactions between firms such as sub-contracting
relationships. Many of these are now developing into full-scale
partnerships solely with a view of sharing resources. Traditional
inter-firm relationships, such as licensing agreements, are also
developing into newer forms of technology partnerships that are
resource-based (Porter, 1980).
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
In recent times especially in developing
countries, inter-firm cooperation of all sorts has been rapidly
increasing and has been taking place on a basis that is more and more
cross-national in nature. This development is partly in response to the
emergence of "resource-based production" and to the processes of
economic liberalization, and globalization, accelerated by technological
advances in information and communication technologies, which in turn
have been increasing the pressures of global competition. It is
particularly significant in industrialized countries and advanced
developing countries. There are, however, wide differences in the
readiness of enterprises from the developing countries to face the
challenges of global economic integration through the mechanism of
resource-based inter-firm cooperation. From the foregoing, the
researcher is curious of making a resource-based theory analysis of
inter-firm cooperation in Nigeria.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The following are the objectives of this study:
- To examine the basis of resource based inter-firm cooperation.
- To examine the role of resource-based theory in the inter-firm cooperation in Nigeria.
- To analyze the level of resource-based inter-firm cooperation practices in Nigeria.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
- What is the basis of resource based inter-firm cooperation?
- What is the role of resource-based theory in the inter-firm cooperation in Nigeria?
- What is the level of resource-based inter-firm cooperation practices in Nigeria?
HO: the level of resource-based inter-firm cooperation in Nigeria is not significant.
HA: the level of resource-based inter-firm cooperation in Nigeria is significant.
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The following are the significance of this study:
- The results from this study will provide basis and relevance for
resource-based theory analysis in relation to inter-form cooperation as
applicable in Nigeria. It will also educate on the advantages of
resource-based inter-firm cooperation practices.
- This research will be a contribution to the body of literature in
the area of a resource-based theory analysis of firm cooperation in
Nigeria, thereby constituting the empirical literature for future
research in the subject area.
1.7 SCOPE/LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
This study will be limited to the
banking sector of the Nigerian economy. It will also cover its level of
resource-based inter-firm practices in Nigeria.
LIMITATION OF STUDY
Financial constraint- Insufficient fund
tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the
relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data
collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
Time constraint- The researcher will
simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This
consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
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Barney, J.B. (1991). "Firm Resources and
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Peteraf M. A. (1993). "The cornerstones
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Porter, M. E. (1980), "Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors", New York, NY: Free Press.
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