The location choices of multinational enterprises have been the center of attention both empirically and theoretically in international and regional economics during the last 20 years. Different approaches and methods have been employed to examine foreign firms’ location decisions. We make a critical assessment of these approaches and their contributions to our understanding of dispersion of multinational activities across space. We start from the most influential theoretical contributions which have addressed the motivation of MNEs to be engaged in a horizontal or a vertical FDI and provide a list of the large number of foreign firms’ location determinants considered in the literature. Then, we discuss the various econometric specifications used in the empirical literature to test the hypotheses on these determinants. Finally, we discuss issues for further development specifically for modeling multinationals’ economic activity in space.
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