R&D in Japanese and Swiss Electronic Watch Making (1960–1980): A Comparative Analysis of Seiko and Longines

International Competition in R&D
By Pierre-Yves Donzé

English

The design and production of quartz watches were an essential technological issue which enabled Japanese watch companies to strengthen their position on the world market and to challenge the domination exerted by Switzerland until then. The comparative analysis of R&D activities within the two companies Seiko (Japan) and Longines (Switzerland), both promoters of electronic watches in their home countries, makes it possible to emphasise organisational differences, which shed light on the origins of the competitiveness of Japanese watch makers in the 1980s.
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