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The concept of learning in the Uppsala internationalization process model: a critical review

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  • Forsgren, M.
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    Abstract

    In behavioral models dealing with the internationalization process, such as the Uppsala Internationalization Process Model, knowledge and learning have a profound impact on how the firm is seen to approach foreign markets. In the light of recent work on learning in organizations, this paper addresses some issues related to how the process of learning is conceptualized in the Uppsala Model. It is argued that the model builders apply a more narrow interpretation of learning than that allowed by the literature, which limits the ability of the model to explain certain forms of internationalization behavior. It is also claimed that perceiving a firm to be a loosely coupled organization causes some problems in relation to the model's possibility to predict the internationalization behavior. The consequences of the strong emphasis on individuals as the holders of market-specific knowledge are also discussed. The paper concludes with some remarks on the emergence of interesting research issues about the internationalization behavior if a broader concept of organizational learning is applied.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0969593101000609
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal International Business Review.

    Volume (Year): 11 (2002)
    Issue (Month): 3 (June)
    Pages: 257-277

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:iburev:v:11:y:2002:i:3:p:257-277

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    Related research

    Keywords: Internationalization Knowledge Learning Loose-coupling;

    References

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    1. Otto Andersen, 1993. "On the Internationalization Process of Firms: A Critical Analysis," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 24(2), pages 209-231, June.
    2. Andersson, Ulf & Forsgren, Mats & Pedersen, Torben, 2001. "Subsidiary performance in multinational corporations: the importance of technology embeddedness," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 3-23, February.
    3. Pedersen, Torben & Petersen, Bent, 1998. "Explaining gradually increasing resource commitment to a foreign market," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 7(5), pages 483-501, October.
    4. Hadjikhani, Amjad, 1997. "A note on the criticisms against the internationalization process model," Working Papers 1997:2, Uppsala University, Department of Business Studies.
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