The internationalisation of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs): a multi-level integrative framework
by Michael A. Abebe, Arifin Angriawan
International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management (IJEIM), Vol. 13, No. 3/4, 2011

Abstract: The internationalisation activities in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have attracted a great deal of scholarly interest in the last couple of decades. Despite the growing number of studies that focus on one or more antecedents of internationalisation activities in SMEs, there is a lack of an integrated theoretical framework that conceptualises the antecedents of internationalisation in SMEs as a multi-level organisational phenomenon. To fill this gap, we propose a multi-level integrated theoretical framework of SMEs internationalisation based on the open system perspective of organisations. This study integrates the extant literature on SME internationalisation by discussing behavioural (managerial), firm-level (resource endowments and strategy) and industry-level (life cycle and competition) antecedents. Drawing from the product-life cycle, resource-based view, organisational learning, social network and strategic management literatures, we develop an integrated framework and related propositions on the drivers of internationalisation activities in SMEs.

Online publication date: Tue, 30-Sep-2014

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