Theories and Research in International Business

Theories and Research in International Business

Time and place: November 11-14, 2024, Turku School of Economics, University of Turku

Learning goal and objectives: The course gives an overview of main theories and research traditions in the area of international business (IB). Students learn about key studies, the history and current situation of the field, as well as future trends in internationalization process, international strategy and management of multinational companies. The emphasis is on understanding the core assumptions and evolution of these major streams of IB research. Participants develop their scientific argumentation and writing skills by reading, analyzing and discussing relevant research, which in turn facilitates their work in designing and writing a doctoral thesis. The course gives a good basis for formulating research problems and conducting doctoral research in the field of international business.

Students who successfully complete this course unit are expected to:

  • Knowledge and understanding: Use their insight to develop research problems in the field of International Business which address contemporary issues, both in terms of academic knowledge generation but also in terms of impact and relevance. Critically evaluate IB papers in terms of their merits, limitations and implications.
  • Intellectual skills: Contribute to debates around the boundaries of IB and critically evaluate IB papers in terms of their basic assumptions, logic and limitations.
  • Transferrable skills and personal qualities: Develop skills to articulate and write contributions to the existing literature and work constructively with academic collaborators.

Instruction and examination: The course includes 1) pre-course work with reading a package of research articles, 2) 4-day intensive instruction with lecturing and discussion and 3) writing of a final research paper. The course examination is based on active participation during the course and a written report on a chosen IB topic.

Credits: 6 ECTS

Grading: Based on the evaluation of the final paper, five-level grading scale (sufficient, satisfactory, good, very good, excellent)

Prerequisites: PhD Student

Admittance: 25 students are admitted to the course. To apply, send the application to the course coordinator ( by e-mail by September 1st, 2024. The acceptance will be informed within a few days after the registration deadline. Please note that as the number of participants is limited, the application (when accepted) is binding. In case you would have to cancel, please inform us immediately.

The application is a maximum 1-page motivation letter including a short description of the applicant’s PhD research, stage of the doctoral studies, motives for attending the course. The following template should be used:






University, faculty and department:


Officially accepted as Ph.D. student (when and where?):

Research field:

Subject or title of dissertation:

Phase of doctoral studies:

Motives for participating in the course:


Ahmad Arslan, Professor, University of Oulu, Honorary Professor, University of Aberdeen, areas of expertise: foreign direct investment, mergers and acquisitions, and international strategy, for more information see

Wilhelm Barner-Rasmussen, Professor, Åbo Akademi University, areas of expertise: management and leadership in multinational corporations, linguistics in the context of international business, culture in international business, for more information see

Niina Nummela, Professor, Turku School of Economics, University of Turku, areas of expertise: internationalization process, international entrepreneurship, for more information see

Grazia Santangelo, Professor, Copenhagen Business, areas of expertise: global strategy, innovation management and grand challenges of MNEs, for more information, see

Instructors may be added or changed if need arises.

Course coordinator and contact information: Elena Sivolapova,