Suggestions Regarding Themes & Topics

We invite international scholars interested in the field of SME research, including senior PhDs and PostDocs, to submit their research and work-in-progress on the internationalization of SMEs -in the digital age- to our highly interactive conference. While digitalization is the theme of the second ISME conference at the University of Bolzano, we are open as well for new research that addresses the formulation and implementation process of internationalization strategies of SMEs, antecedents and success factors, or the impact of different institutional regimes (tax, intellectual property rights, financial support). As interdisciplinary research will be key in the future we explicitly invite researchers from different (sub)disciplines such as organizational behavior, human resource management, entrepreneur­ship, marketing, innovation management, family business research, economics as well as accounting to share their approaches and insights with colleagues. We are particularly interested in empirical and conceptual papers that advance already existing knowledge about the internationalization of SMEs. Although we encourage you to submit work-in-progress deriving from current research projects as well as controversial and provocative essays that addresses innovative research questions, we need to emphasize that your work must comply to scientific standards and has to be of high quality regarding application of theories, appropriate methods, comprehensive analyses, as well as formal requirements.

Important research questions that may be explored are for example the following:

  • How will foreign entry mode choice or market management modes be affected by digitalization?
  • In which way will digitalization change the organizational structure and the culture of an SME and subsequently its internationalization processes?
  • Will export based on internet sites and platforms that are accessible globally reduce the need to establish foreign service units and operations or does it depend on the business model?
  • Will digitalization ease or impede the search for international business partners?
  • To what extent will digitalization change the way foreign subsidiaries are staffed and managed?
  • Will Internet of Things (IoT) and Industry 4.0 alter the ways SMEs conduct business on an international level?
  • How will SMEs cope with this challenge as they may suffer from a liability of smallness with this respect?
  • Do SMEs have the financial resources to compete against MNEs as new electronic systems, software, and content has to be developed, adopted, and implemented?

Interested scholars may contact Prof. Michael Nippa or any other member of the conference organizers for any kind of request and may already attach a draft of their research idea.