International Small Business Journal — DOI:

Accidental tourists? A cognitive exploration of serendipitous internationalisation

Andreea N. Kiss, Wade M. Danis, Sudhir Nair, Roy Suddaby

A substantial body of work views initial foreign market entries (FMEs) as intentional and deliberately planned by proactive decision-makers. However, research suggests that FMEs may also occur serendipitously. We take an international opportunity recognition (IOR) perspective and focus on the cognitive underpinnings of serendipitous internationalisation processes associated with six ventures. We highlight differences in the causal logics of decision-makers and cognitive attributes that, in the process of updating causal logics, create oscillations between serendipitous and subsequent planned FMEs. We also explain when and why an effectuation logic is more likely to be employed. We extend research on IOR by elaborating a dynamic interaction between planned and unplanned cognition that provides new insights into how cognitive processes facilitate opportunity recognition.

International Business Review – DOI:

Foreign market entries, exits and re-entries: The role of knowledge, network relationships and decision-making logic

Tiia Vissak, Barbara Francioni, Susan Freeman

We focus on the following question: how are knowledge, network relationships and decision-making logic interrelated throughout the internationalization process – foreign market entries, exits and re-entries? We contribute to the internationalization literature, network approach and effectuation theory that have not examined these interrelationships during internationalization – especially de- and re-internationalization – in detail yet. Thereby, we provide a more complete view of internationalization. Based on a single punctuated longitudinal case study, we show that lack of knowledge results in mostly effectual (opportunity-driven) decision-making: finding customers via weak ties, trade fairs and unsolicited export orders and experiencing numerous market exits and re-entries due to “experimenting”. Knowledge acquisition leads to more causal (systematic, plan-driven) decision-making and stronger ties, but serendipitous (“by chance”) entries can still occur, and exiting and re-entering foreign markets may continue. We suggest that managers should network and acquire knowledge actively, use both decision-making logics and accept uncertainty as normal during internationalization.

International Business Review – DOI:

An institution-based view of international entrepreneurship: A comparison of context-based and universal determinants in developing and economically advanced countries

Vahid Jafari Sadeghi, Jean-Marie Nkongolo-Bakenda, Robert B.Anderson,  Léo-Paul Dana

The objective of this paper is to investigate the institutional characteristics of different geographic contexts that affect the internationalisation of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The study focuses on three categories of factors: (a) sociocultural, (b) political/legal, and (c) economic. Under economic factors, it examines competitive pressures in international markets, the nature of demands in international markets, domestic resources advantages, and domestic general economic characteristics. The paper identifies universal factors that influence the internationalisation of SMEs regardless of the location of the firm. These universal factors are distinguished from context-based factors, which are specific to the particular conditions of the people/location of the firm. A comparative analysis of cases from Italy and Iran allow us to find factors that are universal, others that are Iranian context-based, and one factor specific to the Italian context. Also, our analysis suggests the existence of some factors without significant influence in either country.

European Management Journal – DOI:

SCOPE framework for SMEs: A new theoretical lens for success and internationalization

Justin Paul

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new framework: SCOPE – to postulate strategies for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) to export, compete, and succeed in the global market. SCOPE stands for Strategies to analyze the Challenges, Opportunities, and Problems to succeed in Exporting. A multiple case study method was employed based on semi-structured interviews with senior managers of different SMEs from three European countries. It was found that SMEs face internal and external challenges. This is complemented by a Pentagon model. This framework could be employed as a theoretical lens to critically examine the antecedents and outcome of SME internationalization.

Small Business Economics – online:

And yet, non-equity cooperative entries do improve international performance: uncovering the role of networks’ social capital

Maria Ripollés, Andreu Blesa 

Drawing on social capital theory, this study analyses the moderating role of social networks in the relation between international new ventures’ choice of non-equity cooperative entries and international performance. The research adopts an alternative point of view that considers that the development of social capital is dependent upon what actions an individual or group of people carry out to build and maintain social capital. Three relational norms have been associated with effective interaction among network partners, namely, informational exchange, organizational coordination and social conflict resolution. Through these relational norms, firms can co-create the structure of the social network and define what the network benefits and social capital are. Data gathered from a sample of international ventures operating in several industries support the idea that networks’ social capital endows international new ventures with informational advantages and experiential knowledge, which are important to reduce the problems associated with the non-equity entry mode choice when partners do not come from their networks. The results point to the need for INVs’ entrepreneurs to engage in establishing routines that enable them to develop management activities in coordination with their network members. The findings provide entrepreneurs of INVs with contextual evidence for making successful foreign market entry decisions.