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Forthcoming Issues

Thunderbird International Business Review Forthcoming Focused Issues:




Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

Submission Deadline: December 30, 2019


Guest Editor: Vanessa Ratten, LaTrobe University, Australia

Thunderbird International Business Review is pleased to invite submissions to a special issue journal issue on entrepreneurial ecosystems and their role in internationalisation. Entrepreneurial ecosystems are a relatively new topic in the literature on international business despite their practical importance being around for a while (Autio, Nambisan, Thomas and Wright, 2018; Brown and Mason, 2017; Stam, 2015). 

High growth regions have been considered good examples of entrepreneurial ecosystems due to the way individuals, businesses, government and citizens cooperate. However, there is still a lack of theoretical and practical examples about how these ecosystems develop and change over time. This is surprising as internationalisation is often a product of these entrepreneurial ecosystems (Alvedalen and Boschma, 2017). 

In this special journal issue, the topic of entrepreneurial ecosystems is considered broadly in order to capture both geographical and online ecosystems. This is important as there needs to be interdependence between entities in a region in order to be considered as an entrepreneurial ecosystem (Audretsch and  Belitski, 2017; Makecki, 2011).  Thus, regions that instill a sense of proactiveness through collective engagement are considered entrepreneurial.  In addition, these regions need to foster forward thinking and futuristic planning (Spigel, 2017).

This special journal issue will focus on international best practice and examples of entrepreneurial ecosystems in order to understand how developed and developing regions operate, thereby taking a more international view to the current literature that has tended to focus just on the concept of entrepreneurial ecosystems without considering in much detail the context (Cohen, 2006; Mack and Mayer, 2016). This will enable the research and practice of entrepreneurial ecosystems to be extended to take into account new conceptualizations. In this special issue we welcome papers addressing these topics and issues.

Topics of Special Interest:

  • How are entrepreneurial ecosystems different based on geographic location?
  • What internationalisation theories complement existing research on entrepreneurial ecosystems?
  • How are developing and transitional economies different in their ecosystem environments?
  • Why do some places grow while others stagnate?
  • How can stakeholders encourage an entrepreneurial ecosystem to develop?
  • What is the role of regional policies in fostering entrepreneurial ecosystems?
  • How are digital entrepreneurial ecosystems developing?
  • What kind of government policies help or hinder entrepreneurial ecosystems?
  • How does culture influence entrepreneurial ecosystems?

The topics listed are not all-inclusive and submissions on any topic that relates to the theme of entrepreneurial ecosystems are encouraged. Submissions should be prepared in accordance with Thunderbird International Business Review’s style guide and submitted to http://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/tibr by December 30, 2019. 

Be sure to indicate that it is for the special issue, Entrepreneurial Ecosystems, 

For additional information contact:
Vanessa Ratten, PhD, v.ratten@latrobe.edu.au Coordinating Editor
TIBR Managing Editor, suzy.howell@thunderbird.asu.edu


Alvedalen, J., & Boschma, R. (2017). A critical review of entrepreneurial ecosystems research: Towards a future research agenda. European Planning Studies25(6), 887-903.

Audretsch, D. B., & Belitski, M. (2017). Entrepreneurial ecosystems in cities: establishing the framework conditions. The Journal of Technology Transfer42(5), 1030-1051.

Autio, E., Nambisan, S., Thomas, L. D., & Wright, M. (2018). Digital affordances, spatial affordances, and the genesis of entrepreneurial ecosystems. Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal12(1), 72-95.

Cohen, B. (2006). Sustainable valley entrepreneurial ecosystems. Business Strategy and the Environment15(1), 1-14.

Brown, R., & Mason, C. (2017). Looking inside the spiky bits: a critical review and conceptualisation of entrepreneurial ecosystems. Small Business Economics49(1), 11-30.

Mack, E., & Mayer, H. (2016). The evolutionary dynamics of entrepreneurial ecosystems. Urban Studies53(10), 2118-2133.

Malecki, E. J. (2011). Connecting local entrepreneurial ecosystems to global innovation networks: open innovation, double networks and knowledge integration. International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management14(1), 36-59.

Spigel, B. (2017). The relational organization of entrepreneurial ecosystems. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice41(1), 49-72.

Stam, E. (2015). Entrepreneurial ecosystems and regional policy: a sympathetic critique. European Planning Studies23(9), 1759-1769.





    Market Entry into Africa: Acquisitions and International Joint Ventures.

    Market Entry into Africa: Acquisitions and International Joint Ventures.

    Forthcoming in 2019

    Co-Guest Editors

    Dr. Nnamdi Oguji, University of Vaasa, Finland - nnamdi.oguji@uva.fi
    Dr. Richard Owusu, Linnaeus University, Sweden - richard.owusu@lnu.se

    Thunderbird International Business Review is pleased to announce a special issue dealing with market entry, acquisitions and IJVs of firms in Africa.

    Submission Deadline: 1 October 2018

    For the past 40 years, while international business (IB) studies have focused on explaining the internationalization of multinational enterprises (MNEs) and the globalization of markets, studies focused on Africa have thus far been limited. Extending IB studies to the African context will improve IB theories as it has been suggested that contextualized explanations improve theorizing in international business studies (Meyer & Peng 2005; Welch, Piekkari, Plakoyiannaki & Paavilainen-Möntymäki 2011). African markets provide a unique context to test IB theories empirically and develop context-specific theories (Van de Ven & Jing 2011). Similar contextualization has been done in transition economies of Central and Eastern Europe (Meyer & Peng 2005), China (Child & Tse 2001), and studies on strategies of emerging market MNEs (Cuervo-Cazurra 2012).

    The aim of this special issue is to advance international business in Africa and specifically focus on how foreign firms enter African markets via acquisitions and international joint ventures. It will extend knowledge of these market entry strategies in Africa for research and for foreign firms intending to or currently doing business in Africa.

    This issue will address two important entry mode choices for foreign firms seeking market entry into Africa: the choice of acquisitions (partial and full acquisitions); and international joint ventures. Acquisitions and international joint ventures are gaining importance in Africa (Boateng and Glaister 2003; Dadzie & Owusu 2015) partly due to an increasing consolidation of several industries and economic liberation policies implemented by many Africa countries (UNCTAD 2015).

    We seek papers that explore and analyze why foreign firms opt for IJV and acquisition strategies in Africa, how they manage their African subsidiaries and their performance with these entry modes. Furthermore, we seek for mainly empirical research but also some conceptual papers that enrich the contextualization of Africa in international business. Specifically, we seek state-of-the-art empirical and conceptual papers on topics including, but not limited to the following:

    Motives and formation of IJVs and Acquisitions in Africa

    • Motives of IJVs and acquisitions in Africa
    • Motives of regional M&A vs. other cross-border M&As.
    • Partner selection in IJVs, targets search and due diligence in acquisitions in Africa
    • How IJVs and acquisitions from western countries in Africa differ from those of emerging market countries such as the BRICS?
    • What are the major trends in IJVs and acquisitions in Africa?

    External factors that are affecting IJVs and cross-border M&As in Africa

    • How have institutional changes in African countries affected IJVs and acquisitions in Africa?
    • In which countries are foreign investors utilizing IJVs more than acquisitions and vice versa and why?
    • How do the institutional frameworks in Africa affect IJV & M&A process?
    • What are the obstacles to IJVs and cross-border M&A in Africa?

    Entry and Ownership Strategies:  How do foreign firms choose their entry strategies in Africa?

    • How do firms choose between partial, staged, full acquisitions and IJVs?
    • Partial acquisition vs. joint ventures
    • Partial  vs. Full Acquisitions 
    • Staged acquisitions vs. full acquisitions
    • Ownership and control mechanisms in IJVS in Africa

    Management of IJVs and Acquisitions in Africa

    • Knowledge transfer  in IJVS and Acquisitions
    • Expatriate managers vs. local management team
    • Local adaptation vs. absorption of foreign practices in IJVs and acquisitions in Africa

    Organizational and Cultural Issues in Acquisitions and IJVs in Africa

    • The impact of cultural and language diversity in Africa on effective integration of cross-border acquisitions in Africa
    • The integration process in acquisitions in Africa
    • The role of culture in integration management in cross-border acquisitions in Africa
    • HRM practices in IJVS and acquisitions
    • Integration strategies in acquisitions

    Performance of IJVs and Acquisitions in Africa

    • Lessons learned from unsuccessful acquisition deals  and IJV failure in Africa
    • Determinants of performance of IJVs and acquisitions in Africa
    • Survival and stability of IJVs in Africa.
    • Divestments of IJVs and acquisitions in Africa

    New Trends in Expatriation

    New Trends in Expatriation

    Forthcoming in 2018

    Guest editors

    Jaime Bonache, PhD, Universidad Carlos III, Spain
    Chris Brewster, PhD, Henley Business School, UK & University of Vaasa, Finland
    Jean-Luc Cerdin, PhD, ESSEC, France
    Vesa Suutari, PhD, Vaasa University, Finland

    Thunderbird International Business Review is pleased to announce a special issue dealing with expatriation.

    The EIASM Workshop on Expatriation allows both experienced academics and newcomers interested on global mobility issues to meet and discuss their research. The event is run as an interactive workshop discussing both the latest research carried out by the participants and the overall development of the field. The number of participants is restricted in order to encourage participation and collegiate support. Researchers at all levels, from the very experienced to the new, are welcome. The best papers from each workshop have traditionally been published in a special issue in a selected high-quality journal.

    The management of the international labour force and expatriation, and topics related to that management, are the subject of this special issue. The issue focuses in particular on new trends emerging within this research tradition. Examples of such developing themes include:

    • The talent management and expatriation as two significantly overlapping but separate areas of research. Bringing the two together through a global talent management perspective has significant implications for both research and practice.
    • Interest in self-initiated expatriation has been steadily increasing since the topic was first identified in 2000. There are still many issues needing research such as the repatriation experiences of SIEs, longer-term impacts of assignments on career capital and the careers of SIEs or the HR-processes which can be used so that the potential of this employer group would be fully utilized in organizations. The link to migration studies also offers a rich basis for collaborative work. There is also a need to analyse different types of SIEs in order to really take the diversity of this group into account.
    • Interest in alternative forms of global mobility such as short-term assignments, virtual assignments, commuters and frequent flyers is also growing. While the long-term focus of expatriate research has been on long-term international assignments, other types of international assignment patterns are growing at least as fast as traditional company sponsored expatriation.

    Companies in the Circular Economy

    Companies in the Circular Economy

    Forthcoming in  2018

    Guest editors

    Mark Esposito, PhD, Grenoble School of Management & Harvard University Extension|
    Terence Tse, PhD, ESCP Europe Business School & i7 Institute for Innovation and Competitiveness
    Khaled Soufani, PhD, Cambridge Judge Business School

    Thunderbird International Business Review is pleased to announce a special issue dealing with the circular economy.

    This issue opens discussions on the concept of Circular Economy, an issue that lately has been gaining a great deal of traction in business, societal and political conversations. In direct contrast to our prevailing linear “cradle-to-grave” economic model, the new type of economy stresses the fact that companies and countries alike can no longer rely on the use of scare resources to grow themselves. This is particular relevant as our take, make and dispose lifestyle is using up ever more of the world’s rapidly depleting resources.

    The circular pathway, also called the “cradle-to-cradle” model, is more than just recycling and environmental concerns. It is about a new way of thinking about how to grow without resorting to simply expending resources. In this particular special issue, our intention is to examine how companies can explore – and benefit – from the circular model. This model requires firms to come up with disruptive technology and business models that are based on longevity, renewability, reuse, repair, upgrade, refurbishment, servitization, capacity sharing and dematerialization. This also requires a rethinking of products and services from the bottom up to “future proof” their operations, all the way to customer propositions.

    The purpose of this special issue is to provide the latest thinking and practices of companies moving on the circular pathway, thereby sparking further debates and showing the vast implications of the new model for both the academic community and practitioners.