||The 21th century is an age of globalization and knowledge economy. With the increasingly competitive global market and for enhancing in competitive advantage, many companies take International Joint Venture (IJV) to acquire knowledge and technique of foreign companies. Knowledge is the critical resource of the future. A company’s stock of knowledge must include technical knowledge as well as knowledge about how to function in global markets, work with local laws, protect intellectual property, and operate successfully in various forms of partnerships. The international joint venture (IJV) is becoming a learning platform when firms enter the globalization market. Research framework is divided into six parts: (1) motive of IJVs; (2) knowledge protection; (3) organizational learning; (4) knowledge acquisition; (5) control mechanism; (6) learning effect. From this study, the 12 hypotheses were proposed for later test. The subject of this study was the parent companies of international joint venture in Taiwan. According to the large business ranking by China Credit Information Service, Ltd., and use the internet to search IJVs’ parent companies, then sent 680 questionnaires, of which 95 returned. By eliminating 7 invalid responses, there remained 88 copies, the final valid response rate was 12.94%.
Research findings include the following: (1) the relationship between motive of IJVs and knowledge acquisition is positive; (2) the lower knowledge protection, parent companies will have the higher knowledge acquisition; (3) the relationship between organizational learning and knowledge acquisition is positive; (4) different control mechanisms moderate the relationship among motive of IJVs, knowledge protection and knowledge acquisition; (5) the relationship between knowledge acquisition and learning effect is positive.
The contributions of this research have three points: (1) This study explores the parent companies perspective－motive of IJVs, knowledge protection, and organizational learning－to discuss the effect of knowledge acquisition. It is different from most research that explores IJVs’ view to examine knowledge acquiring from the partner; (2) This study explains the relation between knowledge acquisition from IJVs and learning effect. Reviewing the pervious research, many scholars explore the outcome of performance after knowledge acquisition. They always focus on the performance on finance, market share, and profit without discussing the learning effect; (3) Taking the construct of control mechanism in the IJV and explaining these mechanisms can facilitate knowledge acquisition from IJVs. This study uses the control mechanism to examine the influence of knowledge acquisition, and help parent companies not only administrate but also acquire know-how from IJV.
Finally, the result of this study should be interpreted in light of some of its limitations as the following: (1) the limitation of tested subjects; (2) the limitation of industry; (3) the limitation of returned samples. The suggestion for future research we point out as follow: (1) the ownership structure for IJVs is not distributed equally. Future research can examine the different ownership structure, the different level of operation in IJVs that may influence parent companies on knowledge acquisition. Different ownerships may affect the model of knowledge acquisition and obtain different learning effects; (2) this study subject only contains Taiwan’s parent company. Future research can expand the research subject in order to compare the different nationalities, for knowledge acquisition has different issues. Firms of different nationalities would have different organization cultures. A different culture may have an effect on a firm’s openness to its partner or control in IJV. Further, its administration of IJV may also have different outcomes.