2391 Evidence-based International Management
Univ.Prof. Dr. Florian Benedikt Zapkau
Contact details
  • Type
  • Weekly hours
  • Language of instruction
09/22/21 to 09/27/21
Registration via LPIS
Notes to the course
Subject(s) Master Programs
Day Date Time Room
Wednesday 10/06/21 02:00 PM - 04:30 PM D1.1.078
Wednesday 10/13/21 02:00 PM - 06:00 PM D1.1.074
Wednesday 10/20/21 02:00 PM - 06:00 PM D1.1.074
Wednesday 11/10/21 02:00 PM - 06:00 PM D1.1.074
Wednesday 12/01/21 02:00 PM - 06:00 PM Online-Einheit
Wednesday 12/15/21 02:00 PM - 06:00 PM Online-Einheit


Evidence-based management (EBM) refers to making managerial decisions based on the best available scientific and contextual evidence and organizational facts. Such decisions rely on decision-making processes that reduce bias and judgment errors and consider the interests of stakeholders. The course “Evidence-based International Management” promotes students’ understanding and use of EBM techniques in the context of international management. It fosters students’ skills and knowledge required to identify, access, and use quality evidence from science and practice to facilitate better decisions in international markets.

To this end, the course has three main elements: First, the course demonstrates the application of EBM principles to key international management topics. Second, we co-create the six principles of EBM in an international context. Third, students act as consultants in a real-life case study and develop evidence-based recommendations on a contemporary international business challenge for an entrepreneurial firm.

These elements translate into the following core contents of the course:
1.    Basic principles of evidence-based international management
2.    Turning evidence into practice
3.    Six steps of EBM in an international context: ask, acquire, appraise, aggregate, apply, assess
4.    Four sources of EBM: practitioners, scientific literature, organization, stakeholders
5.    Application of EBM principles to key international management topics: location choice, growing abroad with a greenfield or an acquisition, internationalization speed
6.    Pitch day: presentation of evidence-based recommendations to the case study firm and guidance of a respective discussion

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of the course, students,
•    know the basic principles of evidence-based international management;
•    are aware of managers’ bounded rationality and biases in international decision-making contexts;
•    can differentiate between different types and levels of evidence and know where to find evidence and how to implement it;
•    have the academic skills to comprehend scientific evidence;
•    have the skills to manage in an evidence-based way guided by the six EBM steps;
•    can apply evidence-based techniques in a real-life case study;
•    have the social and professional skills to communicate their evidence-based recommendations to a case study firm and lead a respective discussion.

Attendance requirements

The course will be offered in a hybrid teaching mode to adhere to social distancing guidelines. One cohort will attend the lectures in the classroom, whereas the other cohort will follow via Teams/Zoom (t.b.a.). The cohorts will alternate between presence and online on a weekly basis. Students are supposed to attend all six lectures. As an exception, students are allowed to miss one lecture (but not a lecture in which they are scheduled to give a presentation).

If social distancing is no longer required before or during the course, the teaching mode will be changed to presence. Please follow the respective announcements closely.

Teaching/learning method(s)

The course’s didactic concept rests on three pillars:
1.    Evidence-based teaching: the course follows an evidence-based teaching approach, which means teaching grounds on state-of-the-art research and contextual evidence. Linking research and teaching ensures that students learn concepts and methods that are relevant and effective based on the latest research knowledge.
2.    Interactive: The course combines teacher-centered (e.g., lectures) and interactive (“flip-the-classroom”) elements (e.g., presentations, discussions, feedback sessions, teamwork) to facilitate effective and active learning among students.
3.    Relevance: The practice-oriented real-life case study enables close ties between the course and industry demands. The presentation of and the reflection on the developed evidence-based recommendations during a ‘pitch day’ foster students’ social and professional skills.


The overall course grade is based on three assignments:
1.    EBM content presentation (during course): 25% (group assignment)
2.    Real-life case study presentation and discussion (last course lecture): 50% (group assignment)
3.    Mini exam (after the course): 25% (individual assignment)

Prerequisites for participation and waiting lists

•   Course registration


1 Author: Barends, E., & Rousseau, D. M.

Evidence-based management: How to use evidence to make better organizational decisions

Publisher: Kogan Page Publishers
Year: 2018
Recommendation: Essential reading for all students
Type: Book

Research articles (will be provided during the course)

Recommendation: Essential reading for all students
Type: Journal

Recommended previous knowledge and skills

•    Basic knowledge in global strategic management.
•    Basic knowledge in business communication.

Availability of lecturer(s)

Unit details

Unit Date Contents
1 06.10.2021

Basic principles of evidence-based management

2 13.10.2021

Turning evidence into practice

3 20.10.2021

Application of EBM: foreign location choice

4 10.11.2021

Application of EBM: growing abroad with a greenfield or an acquisition

5 01.12.2022

Application of EBM: internationalization speed

6 15.12.2022

Pitch day

Last edited: 2021-06-28