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Title: Corporate political activity in sub-Saharan Africa : the influence of multinational enterprises in the institutionalisation of Uganda's electricity industry
Author: Mbalyohere, Charles G.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5989 0271
Awarding Body: Open University
Current Institution: Open University
Date of Award: 2016
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The study investigates the extent to which Multinational Enterprises (MNEs) operating in Uganda's electricity industry engage in corporate political activity (CPA)1, and how this in turn influences regulatory institutionalisation. It deploys an exploratory, qualitative multi-case study approach drawing on semi-structured interviews, archival materials, media reports and fieldwork notes for data collection. Data analysis is informed by an NVivo-supported grounded analytic method. The findings indicate that MNEs deploy heterogeneous CPA strategies to respond to pro-market reform in emerging markets undergoing regulatory institutionalisation. Some of the most important responses reflect divergences in configuring the relationship with the host government and in nurturing adaptable and anticipatory political embeddedness. Deeper analysis in turn links these divergent responses to the degree of engagement with five underlying perspectives - competing multi-stakeholder demands; challenges of getting locally embedded; accommodation of Africa as an emerging political market; the implications of institutional fragility; and the demands of an evolving political environment. Uganda emerges thereby as a laboratory for diverse CPA strategies targeting other emerging markets in the region. The primary contribution to knowledge concerns the CPA research domain, adding to it perspectives on antecedents and a typology of CPA in emerging markets undergoing regulatory institutionalisation. There is a further synthesis to address political capability theory (and its integration in broader organisational capability theory) by clarifying the nature and the patterns of development of corporate political capabilities in such emerging markets. At a secondary level, there is also a contribution from an institutional theoretic perspective regarding corporate political influence on the process of emerging institutionalisation. This translates into evidence for a co-evolutionary relationship between emerging institutionalisation and CPA. Finally, there is a policy perspective that is addressed in the recommendations of the study.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral