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Local resource mobilisation and internationalisation strategies in small and medium sized enterprises


  • E Vatne


Research on Fordism, industrial districts and flexible specialisation all emphasise a new role for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and an increasing globalisation of the marketplace. Special focus has been directed towards the increasing externalisation of tasks and a corresponding increase in cooperative arrangements or networking. This paper reports from a Scandinavian empirical study of the internationalisation of SMEs, their use of external resources, and in what sense local resources are mobilised in the process of internationalisation. Relevant literature is surveyed and a conceptual model on internationalisation is developed. In this model local business environment, the internal resources of the firm, the quality of the manager, and the ability of the firm to make use of external resources explain the export behaviour of the firm. Four different regions were included in a quasi-experimental design, each including their population of SMEs in the mechanical and wood product sector. The empirical part of the paper is mostly descriptive and includes analyses of the structural differences between the SME populations in the four regions and a report on their involvement in subcontracting, interfirm relations, and their use of producer services. Next the export behaviour is analysed and a simple analysis of the model ends the paper.

Suggested Citation

  • E Vatne, 1995. "Local resource mobilisation and internationalisation strategies in small and medium sized enterprises," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 27(1), pages 63-80, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:pio:envira:v:27:y:1995:i:1:p:63-80

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Westhead, Paul & Wright, Mike & Ucbasaran, Deniz, 2001. "The internationalization of new and small firms: A resource-based view," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 333-358, July.
    2. Coviello, Nicole E. & Jones, Marian V., 2004. "Methodological issues in international entrepreneurship research," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 485-508, July.
    3. Waleed Omri & Audrey Becuwe, 2014. "Managerial characteristics and entrepreneurial internationalization: A study of Tunisian SMEs," Journal of International Entrepreneurship, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 8-42, March.
    4. Jones, Marian V. & Coviello, Nicole & Tang, Yee Kwan, 2011. "International Entrepreneurship research (1989–2009): A domain ontology and thematic analysis," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 26(6), pages 632-659.
    5. Sharon Loane, 2005. "The role of the internet in the internationalisation of small and medium sized companies," Journal of International Entrepreneurship, Springer, vol. 3(4), pages 263-277, December.
    6. Oparaocha, Gospel Onyema, 2015. "SMEs and international entrepreneurship: An institutional network perspective," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 24(5), pages 861-873.

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