A Resource–Based View of the ‘State’
: A Case study of the Indian State

    Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


    This study has addressed a central issue, a gap in our existing knowledge, literature, analysis, an understanding of the role of state in resource seeking. Whilst the role and operations of the firm, has long been a primary focus of research in Strategic Management, analysis of the role and influence of the state with respect to firms has been relatively under-researched. To investigate this core research question, the study identified and applied the well-established theoretical and methodological approach, the Resource Based View of the ‘firm’ (RBV), developing it further to incorporate and mainstream the factor of the state and elaborating a fresh analytical approach, termed the resource-based view of the ‘state’ (RBS).

    The new RBS conceptual frameworkhas been proposed by extending the central proposition of the RBV of the firm-that a firm must acquire and control valuable and non-substitutable resources and capabilities, into a multidisciplinary integration of both the institution based view (IBV) approach and the role of the contemporary state in providing resources and capabilities to firms. The central problematic this research is seeking to explore is the new resource-based approach of the Indian state. The state is seeking the acquisition of energy assets overseas, using institutional support mechanisms and the deployment of specific state capabilities and resources.

    Using an in-depth case analysis of the Indian state, this thesis provides evidence of the resource-based approach, in which the state provides a strategic intent for its firms, creates strategic markets for the firms to compete in as well as providing intangible resources. The state is also presented as a source of new intangible resources that provide competitive advantage and insulate firms from competition in specific markets. Insights from elite interviewees representing a cross-section of institutional actors such as academics, ambassadors, senior government officials, policy planners, advises the state, personnel from state-ownedand private resource seeking firms as well as from the fourth estate, in the thesis has provided a rich contextual information to evidence resource seeking in the contemporary Indian state. The key contribution of the new conceptual framework, the RBS model has been in integrating a multidisciplinary approach to the traditional resource based view theory of the firm. Using the institutional context of the Indian state, this thesis has provided an appropriate context for the validation of the RBV of the firm.
    Date of Award2015
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • Coventry University
    SupervisorNeil Renwick (Supervisor) & Emanuel Gomes (Supervisor)

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