The Global Agglomeration of Multinational Firms (a working paper by co-authors from Harvard & George Washington Universities)

For those of you interested in economic development and multinational production, this paper released Octoboer 22 2012 is a must read.

AbstractThe explosion of multinational activities in recent decades is rapidly transforming the global landscape of industrial production. But are the emerging clusters of multinational production the rule or the exception? What drives the offshore agglomeration of multinational firms? Using a unique worldwide plant-level dataset that reports detailed location, ownership, and operation information for plants in over 100 countries, we construct a spatially continuous index of agglomeration and investigate the patterns and determinants underlying the global economic geography of multinational firms. Our analysis shows that the emerging offshore clusters of multinationals are not a simple reflection of domestic industrial clusters. Location fundamentals including market access and comparative advantage and under-emphasized agglomeration economies including capital-good market externality and technology diffusion play a particularly important role in multinationals’ offshore agglomeration.

Citation – Alfaro, Laura and Chen, Maggie Xiaoyang, The Global Agglomeration of Multinational Firms (October 22, 2012). Harvard Business School Working Paper No. 1524857; Harvard Business School BGIE Unit Working Paper No. 10-043. Available at SSRN: or

Paper downloadable at:

Stanford Alumni Have Created $3 Trillion in Economic Impact

Stanford has just released a study by two professors that indicates that the university’s alumni generate trillions in annual revenue and have created 5.4 million jobs since the 1930s.  The study (the result of an alumni survey in which I participated) puts into perspective the sheer scale of the university’s economic impact, not just in Silicon Valley and California, but across the globe. How Stanford is able to do this? Through its open, flexible, multidisciplinary, entrepreneurial learning experiences.

Read the news release and download the report at

Way to go, Stanford!