Current Issues in International Entrepreneurship
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Current Issues in International Entrepreneurship

Edited by Hamid Etemad, Tage Koed Madsen, Erik S. Rasmussen and Per Servais

The young field of international entrepreneurship is rapidly expanding in scope and complexity, as increasingly more companies across the world compete to gain a larger global market share and attract consumers both at home and abroad. This book, the fifth volume in the McGill International Entrepreneurship series, brings together 29 scholars and practitioners to explore the contemporary issues, evolving relations and dynamic forces that are shaping the new emerging entrepreneurial system in international markets. It examines entrepreneurial efforts and relations in many firms embedded in and constrained by different national and corporate cultures of their own and offers expert recommendations for further research, better managerial practice and more effective public policy approaches.
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Chapter 10: Toward an understanding of how entrepreneurs access and use networks/social capital to internationalize: a gender perspective

Gitte Rosenbaum


Growth in entrepreneurial activity is increasingly seen as an important driver of economic growth, employment and national competitiveness (GEM 2010). With rapid globalization, international markets offer increasingly important entrepreneurial growth opportunities through gains in economies of scale and scope, and increases in market power (Oviatt and McDougall 1994). For relatively small, resource-constrained ventures, the ability of entrepreneurs to access networks and gain social capital is typically seen as a prerequisite to identifying and exploiting such international opportunities (Chetty and Blankenburg-Holm 2000; Coviello and Munro 1997; Johanson and Mattsson 1988). However, despite this recognition, our knowledge of the role played by networks/social capital in the internationalization processes of entrepreneurial ventures in general remains somewhat inconclusive (see literature review). Does reliance on one particular type of network (business, social) result in more extensive or more rapid internationalization? Do entrepreneurs use different types of network for different internationalization decisions? Similarly, do they leverage one type of network to identify opportunities and another to exploit them? How are the two different types of network interrelated, if at all, in the internationalization processes of new ventures? Previous studies that have tapped into some of these issues have equivocal findings (De Carolis and Saparito 2006).

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