Theme: International Business in an unsettling political and economic environment
Program Chair: Maria Tereza Fleury, Fundação Getulio Vargas São Paulo, Brazil ( )
Submission Deadline: November 28, 2018
Unpredictable and contradictory forces currently shape the international landscape, causing perplexity and challenging the basic assumptions of statesmen, managers and scholars. Over the last few decades, the world seemed to march towards open markets, institutional and even cultural globalization; the debate on convergent and divergent forces behind that process excited both the media and the academia, but direction and rhythm seemed clear. However, in the last years, frictions and ruptures in apparently consolidated premises, policies and behaviors, led to questioning of the previous global order, introducing a scenario of deglobalization, protectionism, and intolerance.
From the political standpoint, efforts aiming at an international trade orchestration are being put on reverse and the role of supra national institutions and regulatory issues questioned. Centrifugal forces are dividing economic blocks while the rising powers, especially China, are claiming active participation in world's governance. Challenges common to everyone, like environmental and social sustainability, move slowly. How many planets like earth will be needed so that people can have acceptable life conditions?
The digital economy fascinates due to its potential of change by breaking away from old production models. Internet of things, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, blockchain, big data and analytical digital platforms are revolutionizing products and services, processes and communication. A by-product, an unpredicted outcome, is the threat to privacy and the rise of fake news, all exerting influence on important decision-making, giving rise to new regulatory schemes. Firms must reinvent their business models operating in global value chains that are continuously reconfiguring, seeking to cope with the shifting rules of competition. Individuals, who benefit from the digital economy, also dread losing their capabilities and fear redundancy.
Those challenges are not restricted to the borders of one single nation, but spill over regions, continents, questioning the traditional geographic units.
In this setting, International Business, as a field of knowledge that combines different disciplines, a myriad of theoretical and methodological perspectives, upon addressing big questions, possesses a privileged status in order to understand and take a stand.
In the early years of the new millennium, the rise of multinationals from emerging countries, as novel players in the global arena, have led the academic community to question its theoretical paradigms, which has enabled the creation of new models, typologies, thus denying, confirming, or extending existing theories. The current scenario demands the same promptitude of International Business researchers. The multinational firm remains important as a unit of analysis, but the analytical approaches demand other perspectives - multi-level analyses that will address the facts but also perceive the contradictions.
The goal of this year's conference is to discuss International Business in that unsettling political and economic environment. The future is not only uncertain, but it is more and more unpredictable, what brings extraordinary challenges for international management. How should governments, corporations prepare for such an unpredictable world? How should they design their policies and strategies when economic and political conditions shift so abruptly? What are the positive and negative effects for individuals and communities? Which analytical frameworks should the academia develop aiming to study those issues and provide support for decision making? We welcome papers addressing these topics.
Rapidly internationalizing SMEs compete and cooperate with large MNEs in the global market. This track seeks contributions that examine the internationalization process for different kinds of firms, whether small and entrepreneurial firms, established multinationals, or latecomer MNEs from emerging markets. It covers contributions that focus on the characteristics of the process, whether gradual, rapid or leapfrogging, increasing or decreasing, as well as the various kinds of human, financial and political resources firms draw on in their internationalization. It will also cover contributions that examine the specific influence of different kinds of entrepreneurs such as women, expatriates and others.
Keywords: Internationalization process models; Gradual internationalization; Rapid internationalization; Internationalization and performance; Divestment; Exporting by SMEs; International entrepreneurship; Entrepreneurial networks; Early internationalization; International new ventures; Born-global firms; High tech start-ups; Micro-multinationals; International entrepreneurial orientation; Woman entrepreneurs; Internet entrepreneurs; Expatriate entrepreneurs; Returnee entrepreneurs; Intrapreneurship; MNE-SME cooperation; INV-MNE partnering
What determines a firm's economic footprint, and how should the value chain be managed in order to create sustainable competitive advantage? This track concentrates on the boundary of firms in value chains, the management and coordination of the different functions that comprise disaggregated global value chains, as well as the interactions between global value chain participants and home/host economies. It deals with locating an MNE's operations, outsourcing and offshoring decisions (and their reversal), the cross-border coordination of contractual and equity-based relationships throughout the value chain, the changing dynamics of global value chain coordination and governance, as well as policy implications on global value chains.
Keywords: Outsourcing; Offshoring; Global production networks; Global operations; Geography of IB activities; Clusters and subnational regions; Global value chains; Disaggregation of value chains; Value chain coordination and dynamics; Sourcing; Supply chain management; Logistics; Relocation of production; Re-shoring; Backshoring; OEM contracting; Service operations; Globalization of services; Upgrading and global value chains; Emerging markets, emerging market firms and Global Value Chains
The field of international marketing is transforming rapidly under the influences of: digitalization, technological advances, sustainability and social responsibility pressures, changing consumers, regulatory restrictions, and a much larger geographic landscape that now includes emerging markets. How do international marketing managers cope with these challenges? How is the scope of work is changing for marketing managers? Are any best practices emerging?
This track focuses on such traditional international marketing topics as customers, brands, products, channels, relationships in the cross-national setting, as well as the newer tasks as mentioned above. Two additional themes are of interest. First, given a polarizing global marketplace, how are the tasks of market/customer selection and relationship building changing? Secondly, have governments or the public sector become even a more important customer group in cross-border marketing? What does marketing to foreign governments entail? What are the risks, challenges and opportunities?
Keywords: Exporting; Franchising; Advertising; Marketing channels; Distribution channels; Brand loyalty; Brand management; Pricing; New products; Global retailing; Marketing professional services across borders; International B2B marketing; Relationship marketing; Emerging market customers; Middle class consumption; Marketing to governments; Marketing to family conglomerates; Market targeting and segmentation; Entry modes; Digital marketing; Social media for international marketing; Big data; Mobile and social media analytics
International business faces ever more complex, interconnected and at the same time fragmented consumer markets. This track seeks contributions that address market complexity such as how companies best serve multicultural market places and tailor multicultural marketing communications. Cross-national and cross-cultural consumer research is of interests, especially as it intersects with topics such consumer co-creation, consumer engagement and the development of global brand communities. Another area of interest lies at the intersection of global business and consumer well-being with research on transformative consumer research and the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals. Also invited are contributions on business responsiveness and corporate social responsibility in addressing world issues of importance including but not limited to obesity, health, climate change and poverty.
Keywords: Consumer behavior; Customer relationships; Audience response; Consumer insights; Influencer marketing; Cross-cultural marketing; Multi-ethnic marketing; Cross-national marketing; Consumer well-being; Corporate social responsibility; Social marketing; Global analytics
The creation, transfer and outcomes of knowledge are central to our theories of the MNE. This track deals with the technological and organizational generation, transfer and outcomes of new knowledge. It examines the internal and external aspects of innovation activities, with the internal aspects being focused on knowledge generation and transfer within the MNE, and the external being focused on contractual and equity-based collaborations with international partners. It also examines the changing geography of innovation, the access of the multinational firm to location bound sources of innovation, and the influence of national and regional innovation systems.
Keywords: Networks for innovation; Global and local knowledge; Technology management; Technology scouting; Knowledge search; Knowledge creation and diffusion; Knowledge sharing; Organizational learning; Exploration vs. exploitation; Product innovation; Process innovation; Business model innovation; Management innovation; Open innovation; Knowledge governance mechanisms; R&D subsidiaries; National and regional innovation systems; Reverse innovation; Indigenous innovation; Centers of excellence; Innovation clusters; R&D offshoring; Licensing; Learning alliances; University-MNE relationships; Intra-firm inventor mobility; Dispersed Innovation
What strategies and organizational forms do MNEs adopt at different points in their evolution? This track focuses on the strategic and organizational challenges multinational enterprises face in their internationalization processes. It examines different strategies MNEs adopt to overcome the integration-responsiveness dilemma and to achieve an effective balance between centralization and decentralization. It also welcomes papers concerned with organizational change that is driven by corporate management, and the overall impact of the top management team on the development of organizational capabilities and organizational performance.
Keywords: Multinational enterprise; Transnational/Global/International/Multidomestic strategy; Global diversification strategies; Mergers and acquisitions; Growth strategies; Global networks; Global alliances; International joint ventures; Parent-subsidiary relationships; International/Regional headquarters; Organizational change and development; Organizational culture; Organizational structure; Organization of international operations; International competitiveness; Performance; Boundary spanning; Organizational capabilities; Core competencies; Top management teams; Virtual teams; Family-owned MNEs; Corporate Reputation and Legitimacy
Global leadership, cross-cultural management, global talent management and diversity management are vital to the management of human resources within the multinational firm. This track encompasses papers dealing with the range of HR activities from recruitment and selection to training, performance management, compensation, retention as well as leadership development, and managing multicultural teams within the multinational firm. It also covers organizational behavior topics such as the positive and negative effects of diversity for individuals, teams, and organizations, issues related to cross-cultural management, and the role of language in multinational organizations. In addition, the track includes papers that address grand societal challenges (e.g., global migration and refuges, climate change, etc.) and the people-related and cultural implications for the multinational firm.
Keywords: Cross-cultural management; International human resource management; Global leadership; Expatriate management; Talent management; Training and development; Retention; Leadership development; Global staffing; Global mindset; Diversity; Cross-cultural communication and language; Cross-cultural adjustment; International mobility; Multicultural teams; Virtual teams; Intercultural competence and cultural intelligence; Bicultural and multicultural identity; International migration; Education and international careers; Cosmopolitans; Returnees; Diasporans; Gender issues across cultures; Work-family issues; Selection; Performance appraisal; Compensation; Cross-cultural values and practices; Local compliance; Boundary spanning; Bridging cultural divides; Organizational change and development; Organizational capabilities; Cultural synergy; Ethics across cultures
Firms operating in different markets or across borders choose a variety of methods to govern themselves and allocate decision-making within the firm. International corporate governance encompasses varying levels of internal and external oversight, including differences in board structures, compensation practices, ownership patterns, shareholder activism efforts, and disclosure choices across firms and markets. International financial management focuses on funding operations, investment choices, and risk management in firm across different countries and in multinational firms. This track invites contributions that advance our understanding of these governance practices in an international context and their influences on differences in performance outcomes, accounting standards and financial reporting quality, financial risk management practices, capital market development, bank lending and covenants, venture capital development, cross-border taxation and mergers and acquisitions.
Keywords: Ownership structures; Board processes, practices, and effectiveness; Board diversity; Governance in family-owned firms; Governance in state-owned firms; Shareholder categories; Mechanisms for protecting shareholder rights; Levels and composition of management compensation; Institutional investors; Shareholder activism; Stakeholder activism; Directorship interlocks; State ownership; Corporate groups; International finance and taxation; Transfer pricing; Accounting standards and conventions; Non-financial accounting and reporting standards; Capital structure; Corporate control; Exchange rate exposure; Macroeconomic risk management; International financial integration; Corporate performance; Financial risk management; International cross-listing; International financial reporting
We seek manuscripts that analyze the bi-directional relationships between multinationals and governments. These include, on the one hand, the political strategies of multinationals, e.g., (1) how multinationals develop political strategies to obtain governmental support, shape regulation, and achieve their objectives; (2) how multinational interact with the government to manage and reduce political risk; and (3) how multinationals respond in their trade and investment activities to the diversity of institutional regimes. They also include, on the other hand, the policy of governments, e.g., (1) how governments design regulations, incentives, and restrictions to influence the strategies of domestic and foreign multinationals; and (2) how governments influence the internationalization of firms through direct and indirect ownership. We welcome manuscripts that study for-profit as well as non-for-profit multinationals, firms that internationalize via international trade or foreign direct investment, and governments at the supranational, national, or subnational levels.
Keywords: Business-government relationships; Political strategies; Non-market strategies; Political risk; Political ties; State ownership; Sovereign wealth funds; State-owned multinationals; Policy; Investment promotion; Trade promotion; Regulation and internationalization; Institutions
Emerging economies' share of global GDP is increasing rapidly as their growth far outpaces that of the OECD countries. This track welcomes theoretical and empirical papers that report novel explorations of issues related to doing business in an emerging market. Some examples might include research on city clusters, new business models, government-private sector cooperation, varieties of capitalism or firms' transitions from a culture of incremental innovation to a culture of breakthrough innovation. We are also interested in papers that aim to clarify to what extent emerging market multinationals can be considered unique and papers reporting work on foreign direct investment trends and strategies in emerging markets. Empirical papers exploring under-researched emerging markets beyond the BRICs (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) in Africa, Asia, Eastern European or Latin America are particularly encouraged.
Keywords: Business groups; Institutional environments in emerging economies; Competitive advantages of emerging economies; Comparative advantages of emerging economies; Country-of-origin perceptions; Emerging economy MNEs; Entry strategies for emerging economies; FDI in emerging economies; Trade with emerging economies; Networking in emerging economies; Home country governments; Human rights and business in emerging economies; Institutional voids; Performance in emerging economies; Regional integration of emerging economies; SMEs; South-North FDI; South-South trade; Sovereign wealth funds; Sustainable development; MNE-state relations in emerging economies; Innovation from Emerging Markets; Informal institutions; Political turbulences in emerging markets; Corruption in emerging markets; Sustainability of emerging markets firms; State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) from emerging markets; International Business in less developed countries (LDC)
How do we convey our research understanding of International Business to those we teach? How do we enable them to share and engage with the passion and interest that we have in international business? How to we make our subject relevant to them, to their future careers, and to the businesses in which they will work? How can we enable those we teach to practice International Business and undertake the internationalization process more effectively, employing the knowledge that we have gained over the past 50 years? How do we enable them to adapt IB practice to respond to the new digital economy, and the challenges and opportunities that it creates? If we can do this, we will have found one way of addressing a major concern for the IB discipline: our relevance to the world, and our role in changing it for the better.
Since its inception, the field of international business has recognized the importance of learning, especially of experiential learning; and education has had a major influence in our research. But how much has our growth in understanding in IB learning influenced our IB teaching? In this track, we seek better understanding and deeper insight into how we can foster good IB practices in those we teach.
This special track addresses IB teaching at every level: undergraduate, graduate, MBA, executive, doctoral, and corporate. It addresses all aspects of teaching IB: including experiential learning approaches, facilitating diverse classrooms, using case teaching, as well as the use of different tools and pedagogies such as simulations, role-play, and various forms of multimedia to enhance IB teaching. Please see the separate Call for Papers for Special Track on Teaching IB for further details and submission instructions.
Keywords: Experiential learning; Developing an IB curriculum; Internationalizing the business school curriculum; Cross-cultural classrooms; Case teaching; Executive education; International experiences as part of IB education; Simulations and role-playing; Blended learning; Multimedia in IB teaching; Flipped classrooms
Multinational enterprises are operating in turbulent times, facing political and socio-economic uncertainties that they would never have imagined just a few years ago. The coup in Turkey, decimation of Venezuela and corruption scandals of Brazil and South Africa - to name a few - have underlined the risks of emerging markets, whether as destinations for or sources of foreign direct investment. Industrialized economies have also seen unprecedented turmoil, with business being challenged by Trump's unpredictable presidency, lingering uncertainties surrounding Brexit, and growing intolerance against migrants.
Technological advances have added their own layer of uncertainty to global businesses. Internet of things, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, big data, and block-chains are revolutionizing products and services. The mainstreaming of artificial intelligence, for example, is pushing firms to develop applications for AI that allow them to streamline their international activities and boost productivity.
This highly complex, uncertain and fiercely debated international business context is causing perplexity and is challenging the basic assumptions of statesmen, managers and scholars. Now more than ever, there is a premium for understanding how managers should adapt their business models to such an unpredictable world, and what policymakers can do to harness the implications for individuals and societies.
This track invites contributions that aim to make sense of both IB strategy and IB policy in this rapidly changing world within which we find ourselves.
Keywords: Artificial intelligence; Big data; Block chain; Deglobalization; Digital platforms; Environmental sustainability; Fake news; Global governance; Inequality; Instability; International business policy; Internet of Things; Intolerance; Migration; Poverty; Privacy protection; Protectionism; Religion and society; Social sustainability; Supranational governance; Terrorism; Trade war; Turbulence; Uncertainty; Unpredictability; Volatility
Business in Society is the name of CBS' strategy centered on engaging in knowledge production based on context-driven, problem-focused and interdisciplinary research that deals with complex societal and business problems. As a local host for AIB 2019, we would like to initiate cross-disciplinary debates around the role of international business universities in the turbulent world marked by widespread anti-globalization sentiment and a crisis of economic liberalism.
How do we stay relevant for business? How do we make our research more legitimate and relevant for society? How far should we go in reimagining the business of business schools to stay relevant for the society? How do we rise up to the global challenges? How do we address issues of sustainability and responsible management?
Keywords: Responsible management education; Societal impact; Relevance; Legitimacy; Sustainability; Global Compact/SDGs in research and education
All single country studies must focus on IB relevant topics such as MNEs, international institutions, trade, global value chains etc. Papers submitted to the AIB 2019 conference need to be submitted to one of the thirteen tracks. Each paper or panel proposal must be submitted to only one track. Please select the track closest to your proposal from the list above. Please note that there is also a "Special Submissions" track for authors where the appropriate track presents a conflict of interest with the track chair(s), and for purely methodological papers that do not fit the regular track structure.
All submissions will be handled through the AIB online submission system. All manuscripts and proposals must be submitted by November 28, 2018. Please refer to the detailed submission instructions page for additional information on how to prepare and submit your submission. For up-to-date information about the conference and related events, please check the conference website at http://aib.msu.edu/events/2019/. Any questions regarding this call for papers should be addressed to the track chairs or the Program Chair, Maria Tereza Fleury.
Maria Tereza Fleury
Fundação Getulio Vargas São Paulo
Program Chair, AIB 2019 Annual Meeting