Internationalization as a strategy process
This paper critically reviews the field of international business research. The field is characterized by considerable intellectual diversity, where theoretical focus is blurred by the multidisciplinary nature of the field. The review focuses on three themes that help shed light on internationalization as a strategy process; stage models of internationalization, studies of the link between strategy and structure in MNCs, and studies of administrative processes in MNCs and recent organizational models for MNCs. Sequential stages models are too deterministic and stress only early stages of internationalization. Conceptual contributions from research on structures following strategies have a very static character. Research on management processes in MNCs have a questionable empirical base and normative bent. Three key themes for future research on internationalization as a process are suggested. These themes, dealing with major omissions and weaknesses identified in the review, are: the study of acquisition processes and internationalization, the study of dynamic processes in MNCs, and the study of internationalization processes in their outer contexts.