International Business

If you are planning to undertake study or research in the area of international business I am sure that you will find international business an exciting and challenging area which examines some of the most demanding business and public policy issues facing decision-makers today.

The subject of international business deals with business activities which cross national borders or boundaries. It differs from domestic business in a number of ways. The international business climate is much more complex with different currencies, regulatory systems, cultures and risks. International businesses are often extremely large, multi-market and multi-product, and must be managed across vast distances and time differences. Although international business has existed for thousands of years, in the last sixty or so years it has grown dramatically in size and scope. This is often expressed in the term “globalisation“. Global business now embraces most of the world, a world in which large emerging markets such as China and India now play a central role.

As a business discipline international business draws on a range of other related disciplines – economics, politics, management, and cultural studies in particular. A multidisciplinary approach is often necessary given the complex nature of international business problems. Research studies draw upon these and other disciplines and a range of methodologies – both quantitative and qualitative – in an attempt to understand the determinants of international business activities.

Within AUT international business staff have research interests in a number of areas including the international business environment, emerging markets, cross-cultural leadership, foreign direct investment policy, the internationalisation of New Zealand business and critical perspectives on globalisation. AUT staff have made significant contributions to international business through the publication of books, articles and conference papers and the provision of consultancy to government, international agencies and business firms. For example, much of our understanding of the impact of foreign investment on the New Zealand economy results directly from work undertaken by our staff.

Important contributions will be made in the future through research which looks at the changing role played by foreign affiliates in New Zealand, the dynamic development of large emerging markets such as India and China, how skilled immigrants can contribute to international business networks and preferred leadership behaviours.

Within AUT international business is a growing discipline able to offer new papers in existing programmes and more specialist degree options. On the research side there are considerable opportunities for masters and higher level research degrees. The dynamic nature of international business means that significant new problems continue to present themselves and seeking to understand these is a continual challenge. Access to world-class staff and facilities makes AUT an ideal place to pursue your research interests in international business!

Staff Research Interests

Swati Nagar – internationalisation of small-medium sized firms, particularly within emerging markets and the construction sector.

Anna-Maria Murtola – study of critical perspectives on international business and contestations of economic globalisation.

Peter Enderwick – a range of research interests including China and the Commonwealth, the growth of Indian firms, country alliances and transaction costs, the transnational drugs trade, international investment policy, PPPs and foreign direct investment, and business in emerging markets.

Current Research Projects

Swati Nagar is currently engaged in research that looks at the opportunities that emerging markets (China, India, Indonesia and Vietnam in particular) offer in the area of infrastructure development and the benefits that New Zealand construction and engineering firms could gain from those. The research examines challenges that New Zealand construction and engineering firms face when internationalising to such markets. Drawing on insights gained from existing literature and primary sources the research identifies appropriate strategies and policies that could help New Zealand construction and engineering firms succeed in emerging overseas markets.

Romie Littrell is engaged in a long-term project assessing the effects of societal cultural values on how members of the societies prefer for leaders to behave. The value of this stream of research is that it informs businesspeople who are engaging in management and leadership activities across national borders as to how to initially prepare to deal with their counterparts in other countries, and the study results can enhance their skills in interacting with those from other cultures. Additional benefits are in understanding what leadership, management, and supervision practices might work well in a particular society, and what to avoid. The project over the years has had 20 collaborators at one level of involvement or another in 17 countries. Work is beginning in Russia in 2013.

International Business Staff

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Last updated: 07-Feb-2017 3.58pm

The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.