Adoption of Cloud Computing in Emerging Countries: The Role of the Absorptive Capacity

Adel BEN YOUSSEF, Walid HADHRI, Téja MAHARZI

Abstract


This paper aims to develop a theoretical framework that explains the cloud computing (CC) adoption decision in emerging countries. It emphasizes the specific role of technolog- ical absorptive capacity especially if CC is adopted to boost innovation. Our examination of absorptive capacity is in line with Todorova and Durisin (2007) who propose a frame- work linking the contributions of Cohen and Levinthal (1989) and Zahra and George (2002). To test our theoretical claims, we estimate two models predicting the probabilities of adopting CC, and of adopting CC for innovative aims. We include in our model variables for the firm’s competitive pressure and external environment, perceived technological im- pacts, and technological absorptive capacity. We also include control variables such as firm age and size, and sector of activity. We employ a bivariate probit model to explain the de- terminants of the decision to adopt CC, and an ordered probit model with sample selection in order to understand the determinant of adoption for innovation. Our data are from a questionnaire administered face-to-face to a random sample of 350 Tunisian firms. Our empirical findings confirm our theoretical claims and show that perception of the technol- ogy is a key factor in CC adoption (for general purposes), and that absorptive capacity is fundamental for adoption of CC for innovation. We show also that competitive pressure is an important explanatory factor: the more competitors that adopt a technology, the more likely the firm will adopt it. 


Keywords


Innovation, information and communication technologies, cloud computing, Heckman selection method, probit model, technology adoption, Tunisia, intellectual prop- erty rights, absorptive capacity.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.9876/sim.v20i4.669

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