The course aims at providing the basics for understanding the international business environment for competing in the global marketplace. In particular the course introduce students to the theories of internationalization, market selection process, entry strategies, location choices, international collaborative relationships and other key strategic issues facing multinational enterprises. The managerial implications associated with building the organization and managing the operations of multinational enterprises in a global economy will also be analyzed, paying attention to the impact of national/regional difference in political economy, industrial policy and culture on firm’s strategic choices. The role and different dimensions of “psychical distance” in the internationalization processes will also be analyzed and discuss with the support of selected case studies.
On completion of the course, students are expected to be prepared both to confront the unique challenges of global business and to understand the main special problems involved in conducting international business. Students have to prove to be able to discuss, adopting a critical approach, the various theories of internationalization, the key determinants of strategy development in an international context, the alternative ways of organizing and managing the multinational enterprise.
• Expanding abroad motivations: pushes and pulls to internationalize
• The global trade and the investment environment
• Barriers to international business
• Trade and investment policies: rationale and goals
• Foreign Direct Investment: flows and trends in the global market
• Building worldwide competitive advantages: goals (efficiency, flexibility, learning) and means (national differences, scale economies and scope economies)
• The theories of internationalization of firm: pro and cons
• The market selection process
• Approaches to foreign market entry: alternative market entry strategies
• Factors influencing market entry strategies
• International, Multidomestic, Global and Transnational Strategies
• The organizational choices
• Rational and types of strategic alliances and international collaborative relationships
• The role and forms of “physic distance“ in the internationalization strategies of MNEs
• The internationalization of small and medium enterprises
• Trends in international business and future challenges facing MNEs
The course will be assessed by a final written exam. For students attending the class, the exam will cover all the theoretical topics discussed in the classroom along with case studies/readings assigned to students at every group of thematic lectures. For students not attending the class, the exam will be based on the books indicated in the recommended reading list.
Christopher A. Bartlett, Paul W. Beamish, Transnational Management: Text, Cases & Readings in Cross-Border Management, McGraw Hill, 6th Edition, 2011
Charles Will, International Business: Competing in the Global Marketplace, Global Edition, McGraw Hill, 2012
R. Pezzetti, E. Pavione (a cura di), Le nuove frontiere dell’internazionalizzazione: il ruolo della distanza psichica nelle strategie di internazionalizzazione delle imprese, Maggioli Editore, 2012
The list of case studies/readings and chapters of the reference books to be prepared for the exam will be notified at the beginning of the course. Others recommended readings will be indicated during the course and will be available on the e-learning platform.
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