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Global Value Chains Mapping: Methodology and Cases for Policy Makers. Thematic Work on Value Chain Mapping in the Context of Smart Specialisation

This is the 3rd paper in a series of work on Global Value Chains (GVCs), developed under the auspices of the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission. It builds upon the theoretical discussion presented in the first two papers and offers a new methodological approach for mapping GVCs, using a dataset of the most innovative biopharma MNEs.
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Abstract

The paper takes the example of the global biopharma value chain and describes the step-by-step procedure for mapping interconnected capabilities at a global scale, the concentration of biopharma capabilities in Europe, and two cases of regional and national specialisation in this sector. The proposed methodological approach contains two distinctive methodologies – for top-down global value chain mapping of an established industry sector (such as biopharma), and for a bottom-up mapping of capabilities within the GVC that operate at specific locations. Both methodologies can be applied to emerging sectors and segments driven by key enabling technologies, such as photonics, advanced materials, 3D printing, or renewable energy, or any other cross-sectoral value chains.

The paper includes two cases of application of this methodology at regional and national level. These are the cases of Bulgaria and the Greater South East of England in the UK. The novel methodology and methods for data collection and visualisation demonstrate the linkages across segments of the biopharmaceutical GVC and the position of firms at the cross-section of biotechnology discovery and pharmaceutical drug development and manufacturing activities, managing a complex network of outsourcing, insourcing and supply relationships, through a vast empire of subsidiaries around the world. Capturing and representing the value-chain within biopharma MNEs enables policy makers to understand the complexity of industry organisation across multiple locations around the world and the global knowledge and resource linkages that drive further growth in the sector.