Supporting SME Internationalization



Strategy is a complex and integrative discipline. It is important to acquire insights into a number of promising advanced topics:
a) the strategic processes: strategic thinking, the formulation of strategies, the change of
b) the strategic contents: at business level, at firm level, or at network level;
c) the strategic contexts: related to the firm, the organisation, and its international dimension.
Examples of topics are: strategies related to the management of knowledge (internal investment on R&D or focus on the external absorptive capacity, exploitation vs. exploration, business verticalisation vs. new firms creation and start-ups, product differentiation vs. dominant design and modularity; internationalisation or/and  relocation.
The course aims also to develop a concrete and practical ability for the preparation of a Business Plan.



The course is focused on the analysis of the MNEs global network. The purpose of the course is to provide a deep analysis of the organisational design of MNEs and of those SMEs which have started a process of internationalisation. The topics covered in the course include the following items:
- a focus on the MNE "core" activities;
- the consolidation of the MNE business value chain;
- the entry of SMEs with high rate of growth, localized in advanced countries, in emerging markets.

Some emblematic cases will be discussed, such as those of some EU and US companies, distinguishing the processes of internationalization market-driven from the processes of internationalization labour cost-driven, or studying the entry of some American and European SMEs in emerging countries (re-shoring). The last issue presented is related to the advantages of in-sourcing strategies in US and in Europe.



The course is focused on the rising openness of the international economy and on the prominence of new players coming from emerging countries. This multipolarity is both a consequence and a cause of the phase of globalization, characterized by increased economic openness and the growing economic power of emerging countries. The multipolar world is characterized by a growing economic interdependence across several dimensions: the market of capitals, the circulation of workers and "talents", the modality of using resources, the globalisation of consumers and the rapid pace of innovation diffusion. The course is aimed to train managers to implement appropriated strategies, challenging the firm internationalisation process.



The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the most important concepts and principles of accounting and finance. It is intended to provide students with the knowledge and the basic skills that allow them to understand and analyze annual reports. Moreover, the course introduces students to non-financial reporting, by focusing on some social reporting methods such as the Balanced Scorecard, the Triple Bottom Line and the GRI. Upon completion of this course, students should:
- have a basic understanding of the fundamentals of accounting;
- be able to read and understand annual reports;
- be familiar with the fundamentals of social reporting.



Existing research in internationalization tends to adopt a conservative view of relatively fixed country specific advantages and disadvantages. However, firms may change their internal configuration shifting them and advocating industrial policy intervention. The course, using a combination a country case studies, and nested multiple firm cases, explores the phenomena of rapid SME internationalization, small born global firms in high-tech sectors, R&D relocation and reverse innovation processes. The fragmentation of the value chain is nowadays a major theme in economics and management. The "slicing up" of the whole value chain represents a major change in the new post-Fordist paradigm of production. The analysis of  global supply chain will be enriched by the application of  a “green” approach.



This course explores the challenges and complexities related to the conduct of business across cultural contexts. Managers that do business at global level, crossing and integrating activities in different countries, are confronted with the necessity of coping with diversity. Cultures differ in terms of values and/or beliefs, and these differences shape all dimensions of managerial practices, ranging from leadership to motivation, from negotiation and/or the effective management of conflicts, from the respect of property rights to the ethical norms of the social responsibility of the firm. Cultural considerations are also fundamental to the definition of acceptable business conduct, in terms of protection of the environment and the respect of labour international standards. Cross-cultural management addresses a wide variety of issues, some concrete and objective, but others less tangible, but no less important, that become of critical importance in enforcing the trust in the model of market globalization and international business.



The course aims to develop some basic concepts useful to transform the modern business firm into a creative organisation:
1. Sources and models of innovation;
2. Typologies of innovations (radical, incremental, architectural, and modular);
3. R&D, patents, and public policies;
4. Absorbing capability (the second face of R&D);
5. Financing innovation through VC, business angels, and seed capitalists;
6. The timing of innovation (first mover vs. second best);
7. From the closed to the open innovation model.
The course aims to illustrate the various strategies to protect/acquire knowledge inside the firm (industrial secret, patent protection, replication of knowledge or pure imitation).



Internet and social media can be used as a tool to support the strategy of introducing new products or to implement effective communication campaigns in order to support new marketing and selling strategies. Emphasis is given on the designing of market-driven strategies. Examples, case studies, and team exercises integrate the concepts illustrated by the teachers and consultants (i.e. the Porter’s five competitive forces model, swot analysis, survey building), providing practical information to students willing to become international marketing experts.



The module aims to provide students with guidelines for understanding and analyzing the problems of logistics. It will address issues related to the last part of the Global Supply Chain Management adopting the perspective of developing efficient services (knowledge management & information sharing in global supply chains, logistics outsourcing, 3PL role, supply chain strategy, logistics performance, inventory management, and global risk management). The course will also include the study of the rules and regulations for documentary credits for export (pro forma invoice, commercial invoice, packing list).



This module aims to provide the tools to analyze the performance of Internet marketing and Web sites  selling through the use of on-line selling, on-line platforms, and BtoC e-commerce. Websites characteristics for the purpose of optimizing the use of the web will be described. It can be used as a tool to support the strategy of introducing new products or to implement effective communication campaigns (optimize your website, create content, get social, convert visitors into leads, nurture leads into customers, analyze and refine).


Department of Economics and Management 
Master Office
via U. Bassi 1 (4th floor),  35131 Padova
Opening hours: Tuesday-Friday, 9:00-14:00
phone: +39 049 8271229