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The Internationalization Process of Danish Firms - gradual learning or discrete rational choices?


  • Pedersen, Torben

    (Department of International Economics and Management, Copenhagen Business School)


The Uppsala Internationalization model has greatly influenced Nordic research on the internationalization process of firms. In this article, the Uppsala model is tested on Danish empirical material. The Danish firms largely follow a sequential development as regards the geographical dimension, where, typically, they set up in culturally close markets first and later set up in the more distant markets. On the other hand, the firms seem to follow to a less extent a pattern of sequential expansion of market commitment on the single foreign markets, just as a surprising number of establishments are set up without previous activity on the market. Crucial differences cannot be found between the establishment pattern abroad of large and small firms. The Uppsala model in itself cannot explain the internationalization pattern of the Danish firms, which is why the article advocates that the internationalization process should be understood as an interaction between internal conditions in the firm ("learning" processes), external competitive conditions and more basic economic factors (assessment of market potential).

Suggested Citation

  • Pedersen, Torben, 1999. "The Internationalization Process of Danish Firms - gradual learning or discrete rational choices?," Working Papers 4-1999, Copenhagen Business School, Department of International Economics and Management.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhb:cbsint:1999-004

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Raymond Vernon, 1966. "International Investment and International Trade in the Product Cycle," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 80(2), pages 190-207.
    2. Jan Johanson & Jan-Erik Vahlne, 1977. "The Internationalization Process of the Firm—A Model of Knowledge Development and Increasing Foreign Market Commitments," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 8(1), pages 23-32, March.
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