Excerpt from course description

International Business


This course together with BTH 2412 Bachelor thesis - International Business - constitutes the specialization in International Business, which will be stated on BI's Diploma.

With the advancement of the globalized economy firms and employees are faced with increased complexity. To succeed in international business, managers have to consider and make decisions about external as well as internal factors. The course will in a systemic way address important factors at both levels. External factors will include international organizations such as the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund and the European Union as well as other multilateral organizations. To succeed in business knowledge of how these organizations regulate international business is essential. As these organizations are currently challenged, the course will include discussion of possible implications for business. Finally, the course will include the UN's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and discuss how this Agenda sets new rules for international business.

At the national level the course will introduce students to the importance of institutions - both formal (legal systems, political systems, socio-economic systems) and informal (culture, religion, languages). In order to avoid failure when operating in other national contexts, managers have to be aware of all these different factors.

International organizations and institutions will form the backdrop for firm level analyses. At the firm level the course will introduce students to different types of firm strategies for internationalizing (export, investing abroad); to foreign entry strategies; to building global strategies (greenfield, mergers and acquisitions); to competitive dynamics, to emerging markets (for example the BRICS countries); to new forms of production systems (decentralized, networked, supply chains); as well as the importance of innovation and the emergence of green economy. The course will also provide students with knowledge of multinational companies’ organizational structure, and how to manage people across cultures (cross-cultural HR-strategies).

The course literature is research based and uses practical cases for developing students’ skills to analyze and make a balanced evaluation of topical issues.

Course content

This course consists of  six 2-day sessions, which will cover: key contemporary and challenging IB themes:

  • Globalising business
  • Formal institutions – economic, political & legal systems
  • Informal institutions
  • Firm resources: competitiveness and growth & Competitive dynamics
  • Business ethics & Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Investing abroad directly & Internationalisation process
  • Foreign entry strategies & Structuring and organising MNEs
  • Global Integration and Multilateral organisations
  • Intercultural issues in international business
  • International Human Resource Management & Global Talent Management
  • Stakeholder approach
  • Sustainable development


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.