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Edited by Léo-Paul Dana
Chapter 32: The Internationalization Process of Firms in the United Kingdom
32 The internationalization process of ﬁrms in the United Kingdom Dave Crick This chapter discusses the ﬁndings from a longitudinal study involving the internationalization process of ﬁrms and focuses on the activities of a group of ﬁrms that had, at the start of the investigation, discontinued export activities. It contributes to the growing body of knowledge in the ﬁeld of international entrepreneurship by identifying their internationalization strategies over a period of three years. Its objective is to supplement existing work on internationalization theory that has tended to report on the activities of ﬁrms at one point in time rather than map these over a certain period. In discussing this study, the chapter starts by deﬁning what is meant by internationalization and explains why this might be viewed as an entrepreneurial act. After contextualizing the work, the literature on internationalization theory is reviewed. The research focus and methodological approach undertaken in this investigation are subsequently outlined before the ﬁndings are reported upon. The chapter ends with a discussion on the conclusions that are drawn from the study. Background: internationalization as an entrepreneurial act In this study, the term ‘internationalization’ is used in the same context as that deﬁned by Welch and Luostarinen (1988), as ‘the process of increasing involvement in international markets’. If the decision to engage and increase involvement in overseas business is to be seen as an entrepreneurial act, it appears reasonable to commence with a brief discussion of what is meant by ‘entrepreneurship’ in order to...
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