Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 13 June 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This article discusses the vast literature focusing on the historical evolution of multinational businesses. A broad consensus prevails among most students of the history of multinational enterprise that the modern multinational dates from the mid or late nineteenth century — that it is in fact a post-industrial revolution phenomenon. Only with steamships, railroads, and cables was it possible for managers to exercise control over business operations across borders in a meaningful manner. Transportation and communication revolutions were prerequisites for the existence of effective coordination within an individual firm. Over the years, however, this consensus has been challenged. Indeed, for decades it has been recognized that certain aspects of the modern multinational enterprise have had a long history. The research on pre-industrial age multinational enterprise adds new insights into the nature and history of this most important organization.

Keywords: multinational enterprise, business operations, transportation, industrial age, industrial revolution, managers

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.