Strategy and International Business

Our researchers are tackling a wide range of topics facing businesses in Australia and globally, with expertise spanning start-up and entrepreneurial firms, the challenges facing larger organisations around their strategy, efforts at building high performance work cultures, staying innovative, and competing successfully as international businesses.

Our Research

Firm Internationalisation

​This area involves several projects:

Capability Formation in the New Firm

  • In this project, the formation of capabilities that enable new firms to enter markets overseas rapidly and then to accelerate their internationalization is revealed through empirical studies of early internationalizing firms in both Australia and in the United States. Large scale surveys have been conducted in Australia and the United States, and recently in Italy. This project was funded by an ARC Discovery Grant. A suite of manuscripts for journal submission are in progress.

Inertia in the Internationalization Process

  • This research enquires into the transition from state to changes aspects as originally theorized in the Uppsala internationalization process model. In the original formulation, the transition mechanism was risk reduction through experiential learning. An alternative mechanism through inertia is revealed in this project, with a refined internationalization process model presented.

The Impact of Cluster Location on Internationalization and Innovation

  • This project analyzes the innovation and internationalization performance of Italian manufacturers of ceramic tiles (and related products and services) located within in the industrial district of Sassuolo – the centre of the Italian tile industry – with similar firms located in other regions. The aim is to determine what association, if any, can be established between ‘location’ and ‘performance’ in terms of innovation and internationalization.

Bringing Time Back into Process Research

  • In this project, the internationalization process of the firm is revisited with a view to bringing dynamism back into the process. While process was an original tenet of firm internationalization research, little progress has been made to capture the dynamics in this process. A special issue of Management International Review will call for papers on this topic with contributions from this research team, and co-edited by the team. This project follows from successful publication in the Journal of International Business Studies on qualitative research methods in international business.

International Business

This involves several projects:

National Culture Models

  • This research examines closely the two principal culture models authored by Hofstede and GLOBE. Our articles resolve apparent anomalies between dimensions of the same name in the two models and provide suggestions on the direction of future research using these dimensions. We have provided a critique of published explanations of the GLOBE practices and values scores relationships. Our current work explains the origins and significance of common but invalid cross level inferences made from the nation to individuals in culture literature. Publication success has been achieved with the Journal of International Business Studies.


  • This research develops a more nuanced theory of the multicultural experience, coined N-Culturalism. It proposes that N-culturals are able to maintain salience of multiple cultures at varying strengths, thus functioning with multiple frameworks rather than switching frameworks. This research has implications for organizational behaviours in multicultural settings.


  • This research area focuses on the globalisation phenomenon from a strategic global human resource management perspective. The aim is to explore staffing challenges encountered by inpatriate managers, a concept suggesting the transference of host- or third-country nationals to the home-country organization. Conceptual and theoretical works have contributed to our understanding of this relatively novel staffing trend.

Survival of Foreign R&D Units

  • Almost without exception, previous studies of foreign R&D in multinational companies have been based on cross-sectional data. On the basis of two such data bases, this project traces the survival of a large number of foreign R&D units over the last two decades. In addition to descriptive information on the long term development of these units, the project will develop and test through a set of hypotheses regarding factors affecting the hazard of their termination. The results will inform the debate regarding the effects of international mergers and acquisitions and provide input to our understanding of how MNCs manage international R&D activities.

Psychic Distance and Internal Trade

  • This research explores the relative importance of two types of impediments to international trade: those related to geographic distance, such as freight charges and other costs related to the movement of physical goods, and those related to ‘psychic distance’, such as the costs and difficulties of transferring and interpreting the information necessary to effect international transactions.
  • The project proceeds on the observation that psychic distance perceptions between countries are not symmetric and analyzes the impact of both exporters’ and importers’ perceptions on trade in different categories of goods based on data on bilateral trade between 25 major trading nations over the period 1962-2010.

Organization of the Modern MNE

  • In this project, the nature of the modern MNE is theorized. A concept, new to the literature has been introduced, the worldwide market for market transactions, to conceptualize the nature of the modern MNE. A recent publication in Management International Review has unveiled this concept and applied it to the outsourcing and offshoring phenomena.

Studies of the Evolution of the International Business Field

  • After a successful publication in the journal Scientometrics of an empirical study of the evolution of the international business field, this project will explore issues in the balance of trade in ideas as pertains to the international business field. The nature of IB as a storer of ideas, rather than a source of ideas, is being explored with empirical analysis of articles published in the field’s premier journal, Journal of International Business Studies.

Innovation and Firm Growth

This research area focuses on the level of the project and related outcomes. It examines the value-adding nature of collaboration among individuals, units, and subunits within the same firm as well as collaboration efforts among individuals and units between partnering firms.

Sustainability Strategy

The pressure for companies to adapt to altered conditions in terms of resource constraints, emission pricing and social demands are a defining feature of many sectors within the economy offering businesses unique opportunities for competitive advantage where they are advantageously managed.

The sustainability area focuses on three core areas of sustainability: social entrepreneurship, environmental management (climate change and natural resources) and strategic sustainability (success through corporate sustainability).  Researchers within the social entrepreneurship areas seek to break new ground in terms of how communities can be built for sustainable wellbeing as well as how to manage sustainable and scalable social enterprises. Researchers on the environmental aspects concentrate on the use and valuation of natural resources as well as adaptation and organisational resilience to the effects of climate change.  Strategic sustainability researchers focus on achieving financial success through corporate sustainability.  


> For more information on sustainability teaching and research within the Business School please see the Sustainable Business Unit webpage.

Adaptation, Resilience and Change

  • Organizations and the Natural Environment
  • Sustainable Urban Development and Management
  • Institutional Theory and Change
  • This area focuses on the creation, maintenance and adaptation of institutions in society, including the areas of institutional logics, institutional entrepreneurship and institutional work.
  • Organization Resilience
  • This research area specialises in understanding how organizations deal with and learn from adversity. The research area looks at the phenomenon of resilience from a number of units of analysis including the natural environment, economic system, the firm, the team and the individual. A key focus is a theory-building agenda which seeks to develop a rigorous foundation for organization resilience research.


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Researchers within UQ Business School are always looking for new collaboration opportunities to continue to provide highly translatable outcomes to business and the community.


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