Calls for papers


International Journal of Business and Globalisation
International Journal of Business and Globalisation


IMC 2017: "Internationalisation of Family Business Firms"

Guest Editors:
Dr. Amiya Mohapatra and Dr. Sudhir Rana, Fortune Institute of International Business, India

Family business studies have emerged as a distinctive field of study over the last two decades (Massis et al 2012; Melin et al 2013). The field still faces developmental challenges; however, in terms of knowledge consolidation there’s increasing rigour and relevance (Steier et al 2015; Wright et al 2014). Family firms represent the predominant form of business organisation in the world (LaPorta, Lopez-de-Silanes, and Shleifer, 1999). Research on family businesses should surely be attracting a great deal of attention today, feasibly even occupying a central role in research on economies, institutions, policy formation and organisations. After all, family-based firms have persisted as an organisational form into the 21st century across a wide variety of capitalist economies, despite repeated forecasts of their inevitable demise. From Marx to Schumpeter, theorists have predicted the long-term triumph of large publicly held firms at the expense of closely held family firms. Nonetheless, family businesses have refused to go quietly into the night.

Family businesses are diverse, abundant and dominant in the economic landscapes around the world (Howoroth, Rose, Hamilton and Westhead, 2010).The diverse nature of family businesses suggests we should look closely at the context in which family businesses abide (Wailerdsak, 2008). There is an emerging body of knowledge based on the comparison of new ventures and established ventures of entrepreneurs and family firms in their performance and behaviour (Andres 2008; Miller, Le Breton Miller,and Scholnick 2008; Perez-gonzalez 2006). Family firms have important implications for the entrepreneurial foundation. (Aldrich and Cliff 2003; Brannon, Wiklund and Haynie, 2012).

Family firms are occupying a central place in global markets. Research on the internationalisation of family firms is at growing stage wherein innovation is particularly emphasised in the pursuit of opportunities, but a combination of historical factors, cultural values and government regulations have restricted these opportunities, particularly in developing and diverse country like India (Dana, 2000). Internationalisation is a complex strategic decision for businesses (Jorge, Couto, veloso and franco 2017), and despite numerous studies published on the internationalisation of family firms, there is still a lack of understanding of its uniqueness, along with mixed evidence from outcomes (Arregle et al 2017; Fernandez and Nieto 2006; Arregle, Naldi, Nordqvist and Hit 2012; Fernandez and Nieto 2006; Sciacia, Mazzola, Astrakhan and Pieper 2012).

However, the relevant issues regarding the internationalisation of family firms have been sufficiently researched in the past (Donckels and Frohlich, 1991; Ward, 1997; Zahra, 2003; Ratten, Dana and Ramadani, 2017; Ratten et al. 2017). But due to several constraints, limitations and challenges, there is little theoretical literature analysing a firm's export intensity (Schlegelmilch and Crook, 1988; Dana et al. 2008). There is a considerable gap in the theory and framework development for explaining and discussing the phenomenon of internationalisation of family firms – particularly those from developing countries. The available models and theories to explain this phenomenon need be expanded (Paul and Dikova, 2016).

Uncertainty, the lack of strategic resources and the complexity of the process make internationalisation a difficult objective to attain (Dana et al. 1999; Jorge, Couto, Veloso and Franco 2017). In spite of a considerable body of literature on family firms in general, this special issue attempts to improve our understanding of family firm’s internationalisation in emerging economies. We are hoping that this special issue will make several contributions to the field of family business research.

The issue will carry revised and substantially extended versions of selected papers presented at the 3rd International Management Conference, but we are also inviting other experts to submit articles for this call.

Subject Coverage
Suitable topics include, but are not limited, to the following:

  • What are the environmental factors that determine the success of family firm internationalisation in an emerging economy? How do they exert their influence?
  • What drives the internationalisation of family firms from emerging economies?
  • In the process of internationalisation, which factors determine entrepreneurial decision making?
  • What kind of strategies the do firms need to formulate while going global? How do family firms from countries at varying levels of economic development differ in their strategies?
  • How do the family firms focus on branding while going global?
  • Is there scope for developing new theories other than the well-researched models such as born-global and Uppsala models?
  • How do the formal and informal institutions of the country lead to the competitiveness and internationalisation of family firms?
  • How do home country and distance (cultural, administrative, geographic and economic distance) of particular host countries affect the internationalisation of family firms?

Notes for Prospective Authors

Submitted papers should not have been previously published nor be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere. (N.B. Conference papers may only be submitted if the paper has been completely re-written and if appropriate written permissions have been obtained from any copyright holders of the original paper).

All papers are refereed through a peer review process.

All papers must be submitted online. To submit a paper, please read our Submitting articles page.

If you have any queries concerning this special issue, please email Dr. Sudhir Rana at

Important Dates

Manuscripts due by: 31 January, 2019



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Andres, C. (2008), 'Large shareholders and firm performance-An empirical examination of founding-family ownership' Journal of Corporate Finance, Vol. 14(4), pp.431-445.

Arregle, J., Duran, P., Hitt, M. and van Essen, M. (2017), 'Why Is Family Firms' Internationalization Unique? A Meta-Analysis' Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Vol. 41(5), pp.801-831.

Arregle, J.L., Naldi, L., Nordqvist, M., and Hitt, M.A. (2012) 'Internationalization of family-controlled firms: A study of the effects of external involvement in governance' Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Vol. 36, 1115-1143. Brannon, D., Wiklund, J. and Haynie, J. (2012), 'The Varying Effects of Family Relationships in Entrepreneurial Teams' Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Vol. 37(1), pp.107-132.

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Jorge, Marta., Maria Couto, Tânia Veloso., and Mário Franco. (2017), 'When family businesses go international: management sets the path', Journal of Business Strategy, Vol. 38 (1), pp.31-38.

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Ratten, V., Dana, L-P. and Ramadani, V. (2017) 'Internationalisation of family business groups in transition economies', Int. J. Entrepreneurship and Small Business, Vol. 30, No. 4, pp.509-525.

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Wailerdsak, N. (2008). Women executives in Thai family businesses. In Gupta V., Levenberg, N., Moore, 24 L., Motwani, J. and Schwarz, T. (eds.). Culturally-sensitive models of gender in family business: A compendium using the GLOBE paradigm, Hyderabad: ICFAI University Press. PĂ©rez-González, F. (2006), 'Inherited Control and Firm Performance' The American Economic Review, 96(5), 1559-1588

Ward, J. (1997), 'Growing the Family Business: Special Challenges and Best Practices. Family Business Review, Vol. 10(4), pp.323-337.

Wright, M., Chrisman, J., Chua, J. and Steier, L. (2014), 'Family Enterprise and Context' Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Vol. 38, pp.1247-1260.

Fernández, Z. Nieto, M.J. (2006), 'Impact of ownership on the international involvement of SMEs' Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 37 (3), pp. 340-351 Zahra, S.A. (2003) 'International expansion of U.S. manufacturing family businesses: The effect of ownership and involvement' Journal of Business Venturing, Vol. 18, 495-512.