chapter  3
23 Pages

A Framework for Assessing National Competitiveness and the Role of Private Strategy and Public Policy

WithErna van Duren, Larry Martin, Randall Westgren

National competitiveness occurs when a sufficient number of firms create the means for sustainable positional advantage, and generate enough profit to finance the private and public sector’s role in achieving their responsibilities. Governments have some degree of control over the general business environment, through fiscal and monetary policies, research and development policy, market structure, education and training policy, and to some extent, the form of linkages among firms or between levels of the market. Research and development, personnel, finance and firm infrastructure development comprise a commonly employed framework for translating general notions about strategy into skills, assets, processes and structures that can be used to obtain positional advantage. The value chain allows the systematic identification and co-ordination of factors that can be used to pursue a delivered cost, differentiation, niche or superior customer satisfaction strategy. In general, private firms develop strategy within the environment established by governments, although this environment is the product of pressures from diverse stakeholders, including business.