The internationalization processes of the multinational corporation - A new research agenda

Desirée Blankenburg Holm, Rian Drogendijk, Jukka Hohenthal, Ulf Holm, Martin Johanson, Ivo Zander

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Purpose: We examine the fundamental assumptions and features of the Uppsala model of internationalization and argue that we need to look beyond this model for studying internationalization processes in the multinational corporations (MNCs) of today. The purpose of our paper is to identify gaps and neglected issues regarding MNCs' internationalization processes that demand further theoretical and empirical study. Methodology: Our approach is conceptual: based on the most cited model on internationalization, the Uppsala model, we approach the complex internationalization processes that continuously go on in modern MNCs. We use related bodies of literature, on MNC structure and strategy, headquarters-subsidiary relationships, MNC subsidiary strategy and development, and opportunity seeking and entrepreneurship, to fill in the gaps and develop the emerging research themes. Findings: We identify the following three issues that need further investigation: the opportunity recognition process preceding internationalization processes in MNCs, the internationalization of multiple products within the confines of the growing MNC, and the internationalization of foreign MNC units. Research limitations: In this paper, we open up new research fields, but do not offer empirical studies to inform us about these relevant issues. Future research should study these issues empirically, preferably through case study methodologies and/or with longitudinal designs. Originality: The contribution of our paper is its identification of three research issues in relation to internationalization processes of modern MNCs, which we argue are neglected by contemporary research.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationResearch on Knowledge, Innovation and Internationalization
EditorsJorma Larimo, Tiia Vissak
PublisherEmerald Group Publishing Ltd.
ChapterPart I
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781848559578
ISBN (Print)9781848559561
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2009
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameProgress in International Business Research
PublisherEmerald Group Publishing Ltd
ISSN (Print)1745-8862


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