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Yes, There is a Transnational Business Community
Unformatted Document Text:  3 especially Europe, were intentionally overrepresented. 1 The sample included 68 companies from Europe (39 % of total sample) and only 34 firms from the US (19 % of the total sample). This disproportionate sampling technique was appropriate in Fennema’s original work because the earlier study focused primarily on the analysis of integration within the European Communities (Fennema 1982, p249), rather than structural properties of the entire global economy. Carroll and Fennema used the earlier sample as the basis for their longitudinal study of global corporate integration by comparing the interlock structures of these same 176 firms between 1976 and 1996, stressing the analytical merits of having a consistent sample over time. In this case, however, their disproportionate sample design is inappropriate, as this technique is only useful when examining subgroups within a population (Frankfort-Nachmias and Guerrero 2002). Given Carroll and Fennema’s (2001) goal of understanding the characteristics of the global economy in its entirety, a more representative sample would be appropriate. Further, maintaining consistency of cases (firms) over time fails to take into account changes in the global corporate hierarchy during this period. So Carroll and Fennema’s study tells us something about changes in the integration of these 176 firms, but little about shifts in the global corporate structure of the world economy over this period. Our Sample In contrast, our samples are drawn from the Fortune Global 500 in 1983 and 1998, which ranks the world’s 500 largest firms by revenues, irrespective of economic sector of 1 See Fennema’s (1982) Appendix for a description of the sample distribution.

Authors: Kentor, Jeffrey. and Jang, Yong Suk.
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3
especially Europe, were intentionally overrepresented.
1
The sample included 68
companies from Europe (39 % of total sample) and only 34 firms from the US (19 % of
the total sample). This disproportionate sampling technique was appropriate in
Fennema’s original work because the earlier study focused primarily on the analysis of
integration within the European Communities (Fennema 1982, p249), rather than
structural properties of the entire global economy.
Carroll and Fennema used the earlier sample as the basis for their longitudinal
study of global corporate integration by comparing the interlock structures of these same
176 firms between 1976 and 1996, stressing the analytical merits of having a consistent
sample over time. In this case, however, their disproportionate sample design is
inappropriate, as this technique is only useful when examining subgroups within a
population (Frankfort-Nachmias and Guerrero 2002). Given Carroll and Fennema’s
(2001) goal of understanding the characteristics of the global economy in its entirety, a
more representative sample would be appropriate. Further, maintaining consistency of
cases (firms) over time fails to take into account changes in the global corporate
hierarchy during this period. So Carroll and Fennema’s study tells us something about
changes in the integration of these 176 firms, but little about shifts in the global corporate
structure of the world economy over this period.
Our Sample
In contrast, our samples are drawn from the Fortune Global 500 in 1983 and 1998,
which ranks the world’s 500 largest firms by revenues, irrespective of economic sector of
1
See Fennema’s (1982) Appendix for a description of the sample distribution.


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