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Absorptive capacity of companies of the Brazilian aeronautical complex: A focus on the public procurement of Brazilian Air Force

Abstract

The research project aims to study the absorption capacity (AC) of the companies of the aerospace complex that participated in public procurement for innovation (PPI) carried out by the Brazilian Air Force (FAB). PPI are a way of using the state's purchasing power in the quest for technological empowerment and, if well delineated, can promote important developments in the sectoral productive chain and technological capacity building. They serve as direct technological development (in the marketed product itself) or indirect (through the established cooperation networks) between the productive, scientific and institutional agents of the countries/companies. Although relevant, such contracts should be well specified and seek to cover a wide range of actors and institutions if the aim is to strengthen the innovation system. In addition, national companies receiving technology transfer processes need to be prepared to absorb this technology.In Brazil, Embraer is the main company in the aeronautics sector, being the main technology developer and partner of the PPI agreements, with the existence of some companies presenting solutions in specific systems. It is also true that previous developments (Xavante, AM-X and AL-X programs) and the current ones (KC-390 and F-X2 programs) have created and continue to increase the capacity established by companies in the aeronautical chain, defining trajectories.However, sometimes specific projects suffer from problems of adequacy and continuity (as in the case of AMX's engine manufacturing by the company Celma), either by budgetary restrictions established later, by technical questions or by productive choices of private agents. Furthermore, Embraer's current organization as coordinator of the supply chain and systems integrator has delegated significant technology activities to other companies that are located predominantly outside the country (currently more than 80% of the productive activities of an aircraft have been performed by suppliers increasing dependence on the entire aeronautical complex).In this way, studying the absorptive capacity obtained by national companies in PPI processes carried out by the FAB is an important measure to understand the level of qualification achieved by such companies, which impact their results and the entire innovation system of the Brazilian aeronautical complex. (AU)

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