The 11th Annual International Business Research Forum
Frontiers of Research in International Business: Organizational Form and Function in the 21st Century
April 10-11, 2010
Ram Mudambi, Temple University
Tim Swift, St Joseph’s University
Preet Aulakh, York University
Donna DeCarolis, Drexel University
Andrew Inkpen, Thunderbird Graduate School of International Management
Mahesh Joshi, George Mason University
Yadong Luo, University of Miami
Vikas Mittal, Rice University
Arvind Parkhe, Temple University
International business focuses on a group of firms that face distinctive decision making problems. Multinational enterprises (MNEs) control value chains that are disrupted by country-specific transport costs, government restrictions differences in tastes and production conditions. Such firms face two fundamental challenges. The first concerns controlling the costs that arise from the complexities of multinational activity. These include a diverse set of tasks such as managing the impact of exchange-rate variations, differences of national culture, customs and law, practices that constrain employee compensation, evaluation practices and so on. The second concerns creating value through leveraging their international networks to foster innovation and knowledge. This includes using their subsidiary networks, which serve as local extensions that tap into knowledge clusters, or develop into geographic centers of excellence. Thus, the subsidiary network can serve as a means of creating new technological, managerial and marketing competencies.
The Research Forum encourages the submission of cutting edge research aimed at defining the future of the multinational enterprise. Submission deadline: January 30, 2010
The following areas of research are illustrative, but not exhaustive:
- Geography and value creation: The global organization of the value-adding activities of multinational enterprises and the interplay between the organization of these activities and the characteristics of their locations. This includes off-shore value production and international logistics systems.
- Knowledge integration: MNEs are typically large firms that excel at combining and recombining diverse bodies of knowledge in order to create value. This process of knowledge integration is still not well understood. Research proposals studying these processes are particularly welcome.
- International corporate entrepreneurship: It is now recognized that MNE innovation requires a considerable degree of entrepreneurship within the confines of the firm. How is such entrepreneurship fostered, nurtured and managed?
- Multinationals from Emerging Market Economies: In recent years, we have seen the evolution and emergence of high profile multinationals from emerging market economies. This phenomenon creates interesting research opportunities related to the motivations and paths of the emergence of these new multinationals, their management of foreign subsidiaries, inward and outward knowledge flows, among others. Research that provides new theoretical and empirical insights on these multinationals as well as cross-national comparative research on emerging MNEs from diverse developing countries is welcome.
- Technological clusters: Highly tacit R&D-based knowledge resides in certain geographic areas known as “technological clusters,” where R&D work that involves highly tacit knowledge can be performed by R&D scientists that are co-located. Yet extant research offers contradictory insights on the value of locating R&D activities within technological clusters. Do firms that locate their R&D activities within technological clusters have different levels of innovative performance than firms that do not?
- Radical vs. incremental innovation: A common perspective is that innovation can be characterized as either breakthrough or incremental. Are MNE’s better suited to conduct radical or incremental innovation? How do MNE approaches to radical vs. incremental innovation differ?
- Networks: The study of international networks, both intra- and inter-organizational, their strategies, consequences, and performance outcomes.
- Boundary-spanning: MNEs must facilitate cooperation across national and cultural boundaries. Boundary spanners are entities that facilitate relationships between groups with divergent aims. How do boundary-spanners function within MNEs? In what ways do boundary-spanners enhance interaction between MNE business units? Do boundary-spanners influence the effectiveness or efficiency of the MNE value chain?
The forum will consist of competitive sessions, panels and poster sessions. If you are submitting a panel, please ask all panelists to email indicating that they will attend if the panel is accepted.
Papers and panel proposals should be emailed by January 30, 2010 to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Director, Temple CIBER
& Institute of Global Management Studies
Managing Editor, Journal of International Management
Fox School of Business, Temple University
506 Alter Hall, 1801 Liacouras Walk
Philadelphia PA 19122, USA