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Paper info: Internationalisation process from a resource network perspective


Internationalisation process from a resource network perspective


Francesco Ciabuschi

Place of Publication

The paper was published at the 18th IMP-conference in Perth, Australia in 2002.


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The aim of this paper is to contribute to the development of the InternationalizationProcess Model (IP model) through the use of a resource network perspective, based onindustrial network theory. According to the IP model, firms internationalize through anincremental path characterized by small steps that are dependent on the firms and thenetworks resource combination. In this paper, it is proposed that the resources play akey role in the internationalization process of a firm. Resources are heterogeneous (interms of nature, location and specific characteristics) and they are classified into fourcategories: products, facilities, business units and business relationships. Firms'internationalization process paths are different from one another because of thedifferent internal and network shared resource structure, the commitment towardsspecific resources, the influence of different internationalization motives (exogenousand endogenous factors to the firm) and of a firm's choice of entry mode (trade orforeign direct investment). By using a resource interaction and network perspective, weidentify how the combination of all the above factors determines the emergence ofspecific "bridgehead resources". We conclude that, despite possible differences in anew market, a firm's internationalization process is characterized by an incrementaland structured resource commitment. This process assumes a cyclical pattern, causedby the firm's change in commitment towards different specific resources. Thus, at eachdifferent internationalization phase, the firm's commitment is towards a new specificresource that characterizes each step and constitutes the basis for the following one.These concepts are exemplified through the case of Ericsson's entrance to the Japanesemarket.