The seminar allows PhD students to present their research, receive valuable feedback, and discuss their progress as well as theoretical/methodological challenges in their dissertation projects.

Topic-wise, the seminar addresses (but is not limited to) research questions at the intersections of international business and (international) entrepreneurship with a particular focus on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and young firms. Focal areas include, for example:

  • Firms’ strategic decisions in the internationalization process (such as the foreign market entry mode choice or foreign location choice) and their performance implications.
  • How and what firms learn during the internationalization process and how experience and learning affect future strategic decisions as well as the firm’s innovation output.
  • How the heuristics and biases of individual decision-makers shape the internationalization patterns of firms.
  • The unique internationalization patterns of born globals as well as family firms and their performance implications.
  • Broader strategic management, entrepreneurship, and innovation management topics.
Learning outcomes

Upon completion of the seminar, participants:

  • can position their dissertation/research projects into relevant topical areas in the field;
  • can identify relevant literature for their dissertation/research projects;
  • can explain and defend theoretical and methodological choices in their dissertation/research projects;
  • can define the next steps in their dissertation/research projects;
  • have the professional and social skills to present their dissertation/research projects, paper ideas, or research questions to a scientific audience;
  • can discuss and constructively criticize their own and others’ dissertation/research projects.
Attendance requirements

As this seminar relies heavily on personal interactions between students and faculty, presence in all sessions is mandatory.

Teaching/learning method(s)

The course’s didactic approach rests on two pillars: the participants 1) present and discuss their own dissertation/research projects, and 2) actively participate in the scientific discussions of other participants’ dissertation/research projects.


The overall seminar grade is based on three individual assessments:

  1. Research presentation and discussion (40%)
  2. Quality of the presentation document (30%)
  3. Individual participation and contributions to the academic discussions (30%)
Prerequisites for participation and waiting lists

Enrollment in the PhD/doctoral program.


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Availability of lecturer(s)


  • Univ.-Prof. Dr. Florian B. Zapkau:

Please also approach me before, during, or after classes.

Last edited: 2024-01-10