Managerial Attention in International SMEs

Jiasi Fan

    Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)

    364 Downloads (Pure)


    Managerial attention affects organizational strategies and the resulting consequences. In the international business context, it is noted that how much attention managers give to the international marketplace, i.e., international attention, has profound implications for large global companies’ ability to identify opportunities and respond to changes. However, there is little consideration on whether and how such attention matters for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). This thesis aims to produce a full understanding of international attention in SMEs by investigating two related sets of issues. First, why do some SME managers invest more attention than others in the international marketplace? Second, how does this international attention relate to SME export performance? Based on a primary survey-based data set, this thesis shows that in SMEs the development/maintenance of international attention can be accounted for by the managers’ networks connected to overseas business-related contacts, and by the firm’s exporting characteristics; Further, increased international attention results in better export performance, and such relationship is stronger for micromultinationals (mMNEs) than for ‘pure’ SME exporters. The thesis hence develops a framework to understand the interplay among structures, attention, and performance in the SME-internationalization context. More broadly, this thesis brings international attention to the forefront, opening up new interesting areas in the international business research.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Groningen
    • van Ees, Hans, Supervisor
    • de Jong, Gjalt, Co-supervisor
    • Brouthers, Keith, Assessment committee
    • Faems, Dries, Assessment committee
    • Knockaert, M., Assessment committee, External person
    Award date1-May-2018
    Place of Publication[Groningen]
    Print ISBNs978-90-367-9592-0
    Electronic ISBNs978-90-367-9591-3
    Publication statusPublished - 2017

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