Journal of Business Research
Stefano Elia, Politecnico di Milano, Italy. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Surender Munjal, University of Leeds, United Kingdom. Email: S.Munjal@lubs.leeds.ac.uk
Peter J. Buckley, University of Leeds, United Kingdom. Email: P.J.Buckley@lubs.leeds.ac.uk
Background and Rationale for the Special Issue
Over the last two decades emerging market multinationals (EMNEs) have been persistently internationalizing by undertaking foreign direct investment (FDI) in developing and advanced markets. Their FDI often involves acquisition of major industry players in host markets. The phenomenon of EMNE internationalization has stimulated a lively debate among international business scholars. The main points of this debate concern EMNEs catching up and competing with global peers (Awate et al., 2012, Contractor, 2013, Munjal et al. 2019), the asset augmentation strategies adopted for rapid internationalization (e.g. Luo and Tung, 2007; Madhok and Keyhani, 2012; Özcan et al, 2018, Ramamurti and Singh, 2009; Rabbiosi, Elia and Bertoni, 2012), the validity of internalization theory (e.g. Buckley et al. 2007; Hennart, 2012) and the relevance of ownership advantages (e.g., Hashai and Buckley, 2014; Contractor, 2013; Mathews, 2006; Narula, 2012), the role of the home country and institutional context (e.g. Buckley et al., 2012; Cavusgil and Buckley, 2016, Cavusgil et al., 2018; Corredoira and McDermott, 2014; De Beule, Elia and Piscitello 2014; Han et a;., 2018), the impact on the host country (e.g. Buckley, Elia and Kafouros, 2014; He and Zhang, 2018), and the characteristics of innovation in and from emerging economies (e.g. Govindarajan and Ramamurti, 2011; Mudambi, 2008; Fu, Pietrobelli, and Soete, 2011).
After two decades, this debate continues. The evolution of emerging economies drastically changes the rationale underlying the most recent acquisitions undertaken by EMNEs. The patterns of internationalization of emerging and advanced economy firms seem to be converging (Wang and Li-Ying, 2014). In emerging economies, a set of modern high-tech and knowledge-intensive sectors - highly capital-intensive and skill-dependent - have grown in parallel with sectors that traditionally rely on labor-intensive activities and natural resources, and the next wave of investments from emerging markets, in particular from China and India, is expected in these industries (Narula, 2015). These macroeconomic changes are the result of the strategies of firms. As EMNEs become more experienced, their modus operandi does not greatly differ from those of advanced MNEs (Cuervo-Cazurra, 2012). They increasingly rely on cross-border acquisitions to augment their technological, innovation, and managerial capabilities (Meyer, 2015; Buckley et al. 2016). Moreover, in recent years, EMNEs have increasingly been able to rely on more advanced assets as a result of the co-evolution of their ownership advantage and home-country national innovation systems, and their asset-seeking strategies are now supported by (rather than being a compensation for) the assets available in their home economies (Elia and Santangelo, 2017). The development of a knowledge and institutional infrastructure in emerging markets has fostered country-specific advantage and, as a result, has augmented domestic firms' ownership advantage (Laursen & Santangelo, 2017) allowing these countries to participate more fully in the global division of labor of knowledge production.
In addition, the increasing exploitation of new digital technologies opens further opportunities - but also challenges - for EMNEs. Indeed, on the one hand, the access to digital technologies (e.g. E-commerce, 3D printing, Internet of things, Big Data, Additive manufacturing, Smart Supply chains, Robotics) enable EMNEs to increase both their productivity in manufacturing activities and their effectiveness in accessing new markets, making them more competitive in the global arena. On the other hand, multinational companies from advanced economies can not only benefit from the same advantages, but also can exploit new technologies to reduce production costs (Strange & Zucchella, 2017), enabling them to challenge EMNEs on their own ground, given that EMNEs have largely developed their competitive advantage using the lower production costs offered by their home countries.
These developments seem to suggest that, while inquiries into EMNEs must continue, there is a need for an agenda-setting effort to identify trends and topics that deserve further scholarly attention. In particular, we suggest the need to explore an overarching research question, i.e. "What is still 'emerging' about EMNEs?" This special issue aims to extend the research agenda on EMNE internationalization. We propose some specific key questions to stimulate research on critical, yet unexplored issues related to EMNEs.
These research questions do not intend to be exhaustive. Rather they lay the foundations for fertilizing the international business and management literature by initiating thought-provoking research. To achieve this goal, the special issue aims at attracting contributions from a variety of disciplines such as international business and management, corporate governance, strategy and economic geography, with the aim of making multi-disciplinarily a hallmark of the special issue.
Authors intending to submit a full manuscript for this special issue must submit an extended abstract, not more than 1,000 words (excluding references) via email to Stefano Elia (email@example.com) no later 31 July 2020. Authors shortlisted will be required to submit a full manuscript by 31 January 2021.
The guest editors intend to host a paper development workshop for authors shortlisted sometimes in October/November 2020 in Leeds, U.K. or Atlanta, USA. This will assist authors in making progress on their manuscript and receive consultation from the guest editors.
Full manuscripts should be submitted via EES: http://ees.elsevier.com/jbr/
Manuscripts should be prepared in accordance with the Guide for Authors available at
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