What are the impacts of implementing ISOs on the competitiveness of manufacturing industry in China?

Godfrey Yeung, Wai Kwong Mok

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


Based on the proposed 'PIE' analytical framework, this paper argues that the preparation, implementation and evaluation of international standards (ISOs) affect the competitiveness of (foreign-financed) export-oriented manufacturing industry in southern and southeastern China, both in the short- and long-term. During the period of preparation, the decision to adopt ISOs is mainly driven by market demand and/or by the decisions of established competitors. Negative effects due to the diversion of scarce resources and institutional resistance to change during the period of transitional implementation are offset by the overall enhancement of the firm's productivity in the long run. 'Tailoring for the external audit' and 'second-best' practices are two strategies commonly employed by Chinese firms to lower the transaction costs involved in ISO audits.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-157
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of World Business
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2005


  • China
  • Competitiveness
  • International standards
  • ISO
  • Manufacturing industry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Finance
  • Marketing

Cite this