Defining firm competitiveness: A multidimensional framework

Justine Falciola, Marion Jansen, Valentina Rollo
DOI number
#Trade and FDI

Defining and measuring competitiveness remains a subject of interest as well as debate: policy makers need to understand how competitive their country is relative to others, and how their competitive position evolves overtime (Fagerberg & Srholec, 2017). As such, well-known indicators of country performance have been developed over the years. While the business and economic literature recognise that “It is the firms, not nations, which compete in international markets” (Porter, 1998), the existing indices do not asses the capabilities of businesses. This paper fills this gap by proposing a multidimensional framework of firm competitiveness. Through factor analysis, we test the framework using firm level data from the World Bank Enterprise Surveys on over 100 countries. Regression based sensitivity checks confirm that the firm level index built in this paper positively correlates with commonly used proxies of firm competitiveness (i.e. labour productivity, the probability to export, etc.). The framework is applicable to firms of different size and export status.


Marion Jansen


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