Towards a Theory of Internationalization
Edited by Léo-Paul Dana, Isabell M. Welpe, Mary Han and Vanessa Ratten
Chapter 23: Internationalization of SMEs in Liechtenstein
Hans-Rüdiger Kaufmann From an economics perspective, internationalization has been a global success story since the Second World War. In the wave of growing interdependence of international economies the discipline of business administration had to integrate internationalization issues as corporate activities increasingly transcended national boundaries. The increase in world export performance (ϩ 6.3 per cent) considerably exceeded the overall economic performance (ϩ3.6 per cent) (Backhaus, Büschken and Vöth, 2003). Also the Rhine valley would like to beneﬁt not only from the fertile effects of its natural stream, the river Rhine, but also from an international stream of goods, services, investment, capital and people. The following map provides a geographic overview of the region. Geographic environment The Rhine valley embraces alpine regions along the alpine Rhine in Liechtenstein, the Swiss cantons of Graubünden (Bündner Rhine Valley) and St. Gallen (St. Gallen Rhine valley) and in the west of the Austrian county, Vorarlberg. The plain of the valley is about 500m above sea level at the Swiss city of Sargans and up to 400m above sea level at the Austrian city of Bregenz. The valley is up to 10 km wide, surrounded by mountains with an altitude of more than 2000m (Rheintal Artikel, http://rheintal.know-library.net/). Competing to attract global resources When investigating internationalization strategies and motives, attention has to be drawn not only to international markets and SMEs themselves but also to regional infrastructural conditions (Goette, 1994). Not only companies but also whole regions compete in attracting international...
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