Excerpt from course description

Business in a Global Context


Both markets and production have globalized over the past decades. Firms face opportunities to reach new markets and to tap into advantages such as lower labor costs or the ability to achieve economies of scale. At the same time, dynamic competitive landscapes are increasingly difficult to navigate with new types of market actors and blurring geographical and organizational boundaries. The multinational firm increasingly competes through connectivity and strategic partnerships in addition to the traditional focus on owned and controlled firm-specific advantages.

This course focuses on understanding how external environments affect firms’ strategic decisions and performance. We introduce frameworks and tools to support key strategic decisions when operating in a global context addressing key questions such as: Why internationalize? How can firms assess and compare foreign markets? What makes one market more attractive than another market? How do institutional and cultural differences influence business? Which strategy is most suitable for global organizations? How can firms strategically use a global network? We also discuss the boundary conditions of existing theoretical perspectives for new types of organizations in digital and sharing economies as well as for other newcomers to the competitive landscape such as emerging market multinationals and firms with alternative governance structures.

The sessions are taught by faculty members at BI Norwegian Business School with extensive global experience and top tier research publications within the field.

Course content

This course focuses on the global business context and business decisions that are unique to cross-border business activities. We will examine important contextual influences such as home and host-country location (dis)advantages, and discuss how institutional and cultural differences can influence business activities. Participants will discuss why and how firms internationalize, as well as strategies for geographically spread organizations. 

The sessions are interactive, blending cutting-edge research with practical examples. We challenge the boundary conditions of extant knowledge, comparing and contrasting traditional firms with new actors in the competitive landscape.

Key topics include (but are not limited to):

  • The macro environment and role of location advantages and disadvantages
  • Institutional and cultural influences
  • Internationalization motives
  • Foreign entry and operating methods
  • International strategies
  • Managing global organizations
  • Knowledge transfer in global organizations


This is an excerpt from the complete course description for the course. If you are an active student at BI, you can find the complete course descriptions with information on eg. learning goals, learning process, curriculum and exam at portal.bi.no. We reserve the right to make changes to this description.