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In the BSc IB, you are taught how global markets and economies work and how companies strategically handle the problems that arise when they operate in a foreign market. For example, such challenges could be differences in legislation and regulations in international markets, differences in what foreign customers expect from certain products, or how to manage financial resources when you operate in more than one country.
Understanding the global business environment
The global business environment will be one of the main focus points throughout the BSc IB programme. You will gain the macro perspective by learning how foreign markets work, how laws and regulations made by governments, or institutions like the EU, affect companies and how to formulate market-entry strategies based on the assessment of foreign market opportunities and competition.
You will also gain the industry perspective by learning how to identify and critically analyse key patterns and trends in various industries, how competition takes place on industry level and how the complexity, unpredictability and changing dynamics of an industry can affect a company.
Understanding global companies
How global companies are organised and operate are also topics you will work with. This micro perspective of how international marketing campaigns are carried out, how a company’s finances are managed across national borders and how companies interact with their customers and competitors in different markets will – together with the macro and industry perspective – give you an extensive understanding of international business.
Imagine that you are working for a subsidiary of an international company. You would need to be able to analyse and solve business problems of an international nature – and to do so you would need to make qualified and sound management decisions. Such decisions revolve around the following aspects in the organisation:
- the strategic aspects: internationalisation strategy, business objectives, etc.
- the structural aspects: e.g. decentralisation of departments
- the cultural aspects: e.g. company culture and management style
You will furthermore investigate topics within international business law and corporate communication in relation to the communication strategies of global companies.
An alternative to following the regular BSc IB is getting into one of the two special options available to BSc IB students:
It is important to emphasize however that these options are available to a very limited number of students only. Therefore, you should not choose the BSc IB programme expecting a place in GLOBE or GLOBAL SCLM as most students who apply will not end up getting a place.
Common interests among those students who study BSc IB successfully and are happy with the programme include:
- the complexities of large, globally oriented companies and the international business world in which they operate.
- understanding these globally oriented companies from many different perspectives as the programme encompasses a wide range of topics within business administration. This also means that you will not specialise within one particular field of study before your master’s programme.
The main focus of the programme is on companies and business administration. However, BSc IB also deals with the phenomenon of globalisation including topics such as global trade, political regulations of markets and macroeconomics. It is therefore useful to have a general interest in politics, economics and the cultures of different countries and regions.
Many of the challenges of studying at university are the same for all programmes. You can read more about these challenges at Daily life as a student.
Each study programme also has some particular challenges that are important to think about before you choose the programme. How well do these challenges correspond to the sort of person you are, how you like to work and the things you are good at?
Competitive study environment:
Many students experience the study environment at BSc IB as quite competitive. Certainly, students tend to focus on their results and achievements in the programme as well as in other areas of their lives. It may be a good idea to consider if you would thrive and feel comfortable in such an environment.
Focus on global markets and business strategy:
The main focus in BSc IB is on global markets and business strategy. There are also courses that deal with the economic side of business such as finance and accounting but they are not as central in the programme. If it is the quantitative aspects of business that interest you the most and you see yourself pursuing a master’s programme within e.g. finance then other programmes may prepare you better.
BSc IB has a so-called “quarter structure” where you follow two courses for about six weeks before taking your exams in those two courses. Each year of study is divided into four such quarters. Some students enjoy this way of working as it allows them to focus on only two courses and two exams at a time. Others find it challenging because it means that you need to keep up your study discipline all the time and if you have just a couple of weeks where you are not very productive it can be challenging to catch up.
International study environment
Even though the programme has a very international focus the share of international students is usually not as high as in the other CBS programmes taught in English. This is worth thinking about if an international study environment is an important factor in your choice of study.
Maths as a tool:
In about half of the mandatory courses in BSc IB you will use maths as a tool. You will not use maths that is complicated beyond the entry requirement for the programme, but you need to be comfortable having courses where you use maths and do calculations at a practical level.
The programme will give you:
• a broad understanding of how international/global companies operate
• how international/global companies develop and adapt their business strategies in complex and ever-changing global markets.
You can find more information about what you learn on the programme in the Competence profile for BSc IB
Master’s programme and career options
The clear majority of students from BSc IB continue to a two-years master’s programme for a total of five years of study. It is very much the master’s rather than the bachelor programme that determines which career paths that lay open to you.
Most BSc IB graduates tend to end up in larger companies with an international profile – but they work within many different fields of business administration.
Read more about master’s programmes and career options.
Grade point average – 2017
Number of places – 2017
Quota 1 / Quota 2 – 2017
60% / 40%
Yes - see Undergraduate admission
History or social studies
Overview of courses
In a corporate context, strategies for good communication may be laid out, but if the personal competencies of the individuals who are supposed to make the strategies materialize into real communication are lacking, there will be a gap between corporate and stakeholder expectations and what is actually being communicated.
The course rests on the viewpoint that communication is primarily a personal competence; if, in a corporate context, an individual is unable to make the proper linguistic, discursive, cultural, pragmatic and strategic choices, the intended message will not be communicated; this goes for both written and spoken communication.
Therefore the course will be balancing corporate communication as well as interpersonal communication theory and practical exercises to allow the individual students to develop their strategic communicative competence by making informed choices from the various corporate communication and interpersonal communication topics dealt with in the course. The course will also address the special role of English as a business lingua franca, which has implications for both native and non-native users of English.
The course will be drawing upon a number of business dilemmas and cases, e.g. real-time cases, which will allow students to follow current development in the media of economic, financial and business-related interest and draw on different types of media for input in terms of vocabulary, analytical assignments etc.
ICT will be used as a tool to support the learning and knowledge sharing processes through collaboration, as research shows that particularly for communications-related subjects, collaboration works toward harnessing student knowledge
After having followed the course, the students will be able to:
- Make an informed selection and comparison of the relevant theories and concepts in relation to corporate communication.
- Compare the main communication models and account for their advantages and drawbacks in the given situation.
- Apply the theories and models chosen to the case(s) in point in the exam paper.
- Analyze, interpret and explain situations and practices making use of the appropriate language register in the given situation.
- Reflect on personal competences as stakeholders in an internationally oriented corporation, acquired in terms of the knowledge and skills required to communicate with people from different cultures.
The aim of this course is to provide students with an introduction to macroeconomics. The course focuses on the behavior of the economy in the short-run, middle-run, and long-run, specifically looking at the goods market, the financial market and the labor market. The course is designed to help students understand how these markets operate, how they interact with each other, and how they are impacted by shocks and macroeconomic policies. The key mechanisms will first be explained in a context of closed economy and the analysis will then be extended to include trade and financial openness.
Why do economies expand sometimes, raising employment and living standards, and shrink at other times? What is a recession? What happened in 2008–09 when the world economy was hit by the worst recession since the Great Depression of the 1930s? How did government policy respond to the crisis and was this response effective?
More generally, which shocks affect macroeconomic activity? How do these shocks affect output, employment, investment, or consumption? Can government policies make economies grow or stop them from shrinking? Why do we have inflation? Is inflation a bad thing? Is there anything we can do to reduce inflation? Why do we have unemployment? Do policies to reduce unemployment work? Why do countries borrow from abroad? How are exchange rates determined and why are they so volatile? What drives economic growth in the long run? What explains the large differences in economic performance across different countries in different times?
These are some of the central questions that fascinate macroeconomists. If you are curious about how macroeconomists look at the world around them, how they model it, and how this helps answering the questions you just read, then this is the course for you.
- Explain basic macroeconomic terminology (e.g. "growth", "recession", "natural unemployment", "trade balance deficit", etc.) in a comprehensive way.
- Describe and explain the assumptions and mechanisms of the main macroeconomic models (e.g. the Keynesian model, the IS/LM model, the AD/AS model, the Solow growth model, etc.). Illustrate these models graphically and solve them algebraically.
- Describe how GDP is determined in the short run, the medium run and the long run. Explain how GDP is affected by shocks.
- Describe the main determinants of other important macroeconomic variables such as inflation, unemployment, real wage, interest rate, exchange rate, etc. Explain how these macroeconomic variables are affected by shocks.
- Perform policy experiments (e.g., changes in government spendings or changes in money supply). Interpret the mechanisms verbally and graphically, and solve algebraically.
The study of organizational behaviour is an inter-disciplinary field, drawing on insights from cognitive and social psychology, economics, sociology and anthropology. This course will provide students with a foundation in organizational behaviour, focusing on the behaviour of individuals and groups within organizations as well as the organization's relationship with broader societal and market environments. This foundation will be built through investigation and practical application of the most relevant classic and contemporary research on organizational behaviour.
We will examine how individual differences and abilities, group dynamics and processes, culture, leadership approaches, technology, and organizational structure affect behaviour. We will consider how motivation, stress, communication and conflict can also affect behaviour. Students will: 1) develop an ability to analyze, understand, and explain important aspects and determinants of behaviour in organizations, and 2) apply theories from the course in a practical way to competently and strategically solve problems, effect successful organizational change, and be more effective leaders and managers, especially in an international business or multi-cultural context.
Utilizing discussion and course materials, the concepts from the course will be applied to different types of companies and institutions. An awareness of the importance of culture and the “global village” aspect of many organizations will be emphasized.
The course will use a variety of theories for analytical investigations of practical case studies. Doing so the course will investigate relations between individuals (employees, managers, leaders), groups, organizations, industries and the wider institutional setting. It is planned to invite a guest speaker to elaborate on the topics analysed in class. The course will highlight the international dimension through using a broad range of examples form Europe, the US, Asia-Pacific and elsewhere. Finally, the research conducted by the lecturers will inform the theoretical and practical underpinnings of the course.
After taking this course, students should be able to:
- Demonstrate an understanding of the concepts, theories and models presented in the course.
- Demonstrate an ability to analyze and explain OB-related situations and organizational practice in an organisation, using concepts and theoretical approaches that we address in the course.
- Use the concepts, theories and models addressed in the course to formulate effective solutions to OB-related problems or situations in an organization.
- Present written discussion, analysis and solutions in a well-structured style, targeted to a specific audience.
This is an introductory course in finance focusing on corporate applications in the international environment. It covers the basic theories of interest rates, valuation of streams of cash flows, pricing of risk, and it draws practical implications for capital structure, project valuation, financing, and risk management.
More specifically, the course contains a basic introduction to topics such as:
- The main characteristics of corporations
- The relationship between accounting information and the information analysed in corporate finance
- Interest rates and the time value of money
- The valuation of bonds and stocks
- The investment decision
- The financing decision including capital structure theory and the cost of capital
- Payout policy
- Mergers and acquisitions
- International financial mangement and capital budgeting
- Financial and real options
- Risk management
Thereby, the course reflects the BSc IB program learning goals in the following way:
Practical Application of Theory
The course includes many exercises and cases illustrating the practical application of theory. In particular, this is achieved both through lectures (illustrating practical applications) and assigned readings from The Economist.
Relation to a Business or an Institutional Setting
Several aspects of different types of financial markets are examined including public versus privately owned companies and various types of providers of capital (investors).
Relation to International Business or Economics
The international perspective is taken in connection with many of the topics covered during the course especially including mergers and acquisitions, financial management and capital budgeting, and risk management. Several examples are looking at multinational firms.
Research Based Teaching
The curriculum includes articles that summarize several research papers and ties such research to the practical use of the theoretic methodologies introduced in the course. Furthermore, evidence from several empirical studies is discussed during the course.
The student is expected to be able to
- Identify, explain and apply the core concepts, models and methods
- Calculate, interpret and compare financial statistics, prices, returns and costs
- Elaborate and present solutions for financial decision problems
Electives / Exchange / Internship (30 ECTS)
On the fifth semester you can take electives, go on exchange or do an internship in a company.
International Business Thesis
See teaching methods
- Subject Area: The project must be written within the field of international business.
- Topic: The research question must be problem oriented and should be connected to the programme curriculum to date.
- Methodology: The project must include an explicit outline of the methodology used. The choice of methodology must be clearly discussed, and problems in relation to the chosen methodology must be analyzed.
- Application of Theory: The thesis must include relevant theories from the program curriculum. The thesis must include a literature review, where abstract concepts are dicussed and anlyzed in detail leading to a set of hypotheses or research assumptions. Concepts must be measured promptly and be aligned to the empirical analyses.
- Emperical Methods: The project must document the ability to gather relevant and rich data, evaluate its reliability, systematize and interpret it in relation to hypotheses or research assumptions.
- The thesis should include an introduction that outline the relevance of the research questions, and outline the main contributions of the thesis work.
- The thesis must include a concluding section that presents the main results of the survey. Conclusion is followed by a section discussing the perspectives of these results in relation to 1) future research, and 2) implications for managers and/or policy makers.
Course content and structure
This course provides an introduction to the functioning of economic markets: it describes what lies behind the notions of demand and supply. Emphasis is placed on the behavioural assumptions that generate demand for particular products, and on whether the producers of a particular product compete in a perfect or an imperfect way. We also explore important extensions to the basic model such as uncertainty and symmetric information. The main blocks of the curriculum are:
- Supply and Demand
- Consumer theory: preferences, rationality assumptions, budgetary constraints
- Extensions: Uncertainty and information economics
- Producer theory: production and costs functions
- Market structure: perfect competition, monopoly, monopolistic competition, etc.
Practical Application of Theory
In each main block the theory is exemplified with everyday problems and issues. We will consider economic models evaluating policies such as minimum wages and commodity taxation.
Relation to a Business or an Institutional Setting
We consider in depth how different market structures affect firms and consumers. We also emphasize how governments design institutions to correct market imperfections.
Relation to International Business or Economics
Several examples from the international business area are considered. Examples will be drawn particularly from U.S., Canada and Europe.
Research Based Teaching
Issues which are currently under debate in economic research are presented when relevant. In particular, we will discuss the limits of neoclassical models and how the research frontier confronts those limits.
After having followed the course the students should be able to:
- • Explain basic economic terminology (as e.g. opportunity costs, moral hazard, risk aversion) in a comprehensive and intuitive way.
- • Describe and rationalize the main assumptions behind simple economic models and analyze the role that those assumptions play in the models.
- • Use economic models graphically (diagrammatically) to analyze the effects of policy experiments (e.g. introducing taxes).
- • Derive numerically economic instruments and apply them in analytical settings (e.g. find a price elasticity and use the elasticity to predict a change in demand).
- • Solve algebraically simple microeconomic problems (e.g. utility maximization, profit maximization, and determination of the equilibrium economic variables), and reflect on the solutions with a critical mind.
- • Use economic intuition to explain topical policy issues (e.g. why are housing taxes popular among economists?).
The aim of the course is to enable the students to understand and explain the determinants of international trade and monetary economics. Moreover, the students should understand the scope for economic policy in open economies and the role played by institutions.
This course offers a detailed introduction to international economics. The first part of the course deals with International Trade Theory providing the tools necessary for an analysis of the “real” economic variables (relative prices as well as the amount of goods produced, consumed and traded).
In the second part of the course the focus is on the “monetary” variables. We develop a theoretical framework that allows us to understand the interaction between “monetary” and “real” variables. Furthermore, we analyze a brief history of the international monetary system and of the single European currency.
Finally, we study the macroeconomic causes and consequences of the global financial crisis and recession of 2007-2009 and the problems related to the European sovereign debt and the Euro
After having attended the course the students should be able to:
- Explain basic terminology from International Economics in a comprehensive and intuitive way.
- Describe and rationalize the main assumptions behind trade models.
- Perform policy experiments.
- Illustrate diagrammatically these models and perform analysis of the pattern of trade, gains of trade and effect on the income distribution from free trade.
- Solve algebraically simple trade models in order to determine the equilibrium economic variables.
- Describe and rationalize the main assumptions behind the main models of Open Economy Macroeconomics, such as models based on PPP, the uncovered interest parity etc.
- Illustrate diagrammatically these models, perform policy experiments and interpret verbally what happens when moving from one equilibrium to another.
The major goal of the statistics course is to produce statistically educated students which mean that students should develop statistical literacy and the ability to think and reason statistically.
Statistics is a valuable tool in the practical application of every other science. Emphasis is on interpretation and understanding of simple statistical methods as applied in business, economics, different types of companies or institutions and industries.
The topics of the curriculum are:
a)The basic laws of probability and the most important probability distributions.
b) Descriptive statistics, both numerical and graphical.
c) Statistical inference; estimators, confidence intervals and significance tests of hypotheses.
d) One and two sample tests for means and proportions; paired and unpaired data.
e) Analysis of association using contingency tables and correlation.
f) Regression analysis; simple, multiple, logistic.
g) One-way and two-way analysis of variance, analysis of covariance.
The goal is to enable the students to interpret, understand and apply basic statistical concepts as they apply in scientific research as well as in everyday life. The students will become familiar with basic probability theory as a model for randomness, concepts of statistical inference as well as a number of concrete estimators, confidence intervals and test. Statistical software will be introduced. At the completion of this course the students will be able to:
- Identify key theories, models and concepts of probability and statistics.
- Use graphical and numerical methods for exploring and summarizing data on a single categorical or quantitative variable.
- Describe basic probability and how probability helps us understand randomness in our lives, as well as grasp the crucial concept of a sampling distribution and how it relates to inference methods.
- Choose and justify appropriate descriptive and inferential methods for examining and analyzing data and drawing conclusions.
- Analysis of the association between categorical, discrete, and continuous variables, using contingency tables, correlation, regressions, and analysis of variance.
- Communicate the conclusions of statistical analysis clearly and effectively, i.e identify connections between basic statistics and the real world.
Industrial Organisational Analysis
The students should get an introduction to industrial organization. They should understand the basic microeconomic models of industrial organization, such as monopoly theory and oligopoly theory and their underlying intuitions. They should get acquainted with some basic concepts of game theory and with theories that explain collusive behaviour, product differentiation, market entry and exit, vertical relations and price discrimination. They should also learn to know empirical regularities around these issues and empirical approaches which try to identify market structure and the level of market power in industries.
The theories and empirical approaches will be covered in class and should be used by the students to analyse the market structure, the type of competition, the level of market power and the strategies that firms use to maintain their market power in real world industries from potentially all parts of the world. In addition the main features of the anti-trust policies in Europe and in the US will be discussed. If possible we will have guest speakers presenting their empirical research with respect to market power and/or their experience from the inside of an anti-trust authority.
The taught theory will be practically applied when discussing small cases in class. The course is related to a business and/or an institutional setting because the small cases are related to specific firms and the students will be introduced into the workings of the anti-trust authorities in the US, the EU and Denmark. The course is also related to international business and/or economics since the small cases focus on global strategies of multi-national firms, on global markets and on national markets in different countries.
After having attended the course the students should be able
- to explain and analyze theoretical microeconomic models of firm behavior and market equilibrium.
- to analyze real world market situations using the theoretical models covered in the course.
- to model a strategic situation facing a firm using game theory and use this to devise a consistent and coherent strategy.
- to evaluate the efficiency of free market outcomes and explain how competition policy may change market outcomes.
International Business Strategy
This course introduces theories of international business strategy and demonstrates them through case studies. Its goal is to develop your ability to apply a holistic view to managerial issues in the international and multinational firms. We will delve into three areas that affect how companies function in the international environment.
Strategy. We'll review of basic concepts of strategy, focus on specific types of international strategy and explore international strategies available both to large MNCs and to small internationalizing companies.
Organization. Here we'll consider organizational issues that arise when formulating and implementing a strategy at the company, such as management of subsidiaries and transactions within the MNC.
Environment. MNCs are embedded in multiple environments, from their host countries to interorganizational networks they are a part of. We'll examine such environments and consider institutional theory, which provides a useful framework for this analysis.
Fully recall basic models and concepts from the curriculum and present them in a comprehensive, well-argued way. Furthermore, students must be able put their findings into new perspectives and apply theoretical constructs to suggest a strategy implementation plan for a company if needed. At the completion of this course, students will be able to: * Identify key theories, models and concepts of international strategic business and management, * Construct relevant measurements for strategic analysis that connect theoretical models to practical settings, * Analyze complex international business situations, and * Develop coherent strategies for headquarters and subsidiaries of multinational companies
International Business Environment
The aim of the course is to provide an integrated understanding of the complexity of the international business environment and the challenges it poses for firms engaged in cross-border activities. Emphasis is put on highlighting the differences among countries in terms of their national business environments, and how these differences are linked to the various strategic choices firms adopt in order to compete internationally. By the end of the course students should have developed their ability to explain, interpret, and synthesize international business practices in a multidisciplinary discourse. Both theory and empirical cases are included in the curriculum; much of the empirical material will be drawn from the current research work of the course coordinator and guest lecturers, to strengthen the role of research-based teaching.
The main blocks of the curriculum are:
- Selected cross-country differences with a potential impact on business operations, including historical, institutional, geographical, cultural, and political structures
- Global trade and foreign direct investment, including the regulatory systems for international trade, investment, and monetary transactions
- Strategy and International Business
- Business Operations
After having followed the course the students should be able to:
- Explain how and why there are differences in national or regional business environments.
- Present a thorough review of the economics and politics of the international trade and investment environment.
- Analyse the strategies and structures of international businesses.
- Assess the functions of an international business.
- Highlight the adjustments needed in the transition from domestic to international business, and the adjustments needed to operate successfully in specific foreign markets.
- Synthesize the above into a detailed and comprehensive analysis of internationalization at the firm level.
- Accounting as a form of communication
- Financial statements and Annual Reports
- Double-entry bookkeeping
- Cash basis and accrual basis of accounting
- Inventories and Cost of Goods Sold
- Cash, receivables and short term investments
- Fixed Assets (Tangible & Intangible)
- Current Liabilities, Present Value, and Long-term liabilities
- Shareholders’ Equity
- Cash Flow Statements
- Financial Statement Analysis
Students learn to develop their understanding of financial accounting via reference to practical examples, exercises and mini-cases.
Relation to a Business or an Institutional Setting: Class discussions are focused around multinational companies in different industries – both European and US. The course textbook has many good examples from US business life, which will be contrasted against their European peers.
Relation to International Business or Economics: The core theme of the course is the financial accounting within multinational corporations.
After having completed the course students should be able to:
- Read, understand and examine the data in an annual report.
- Fully comprehend the difference between cash and accrual accounting.
- Prepare financial statements from the source data based on accounting transactions.
- Understand the critical role of ethics in providing decision useful accounting information.
- Develop financial ratios for a company and analyze the information content of these measures to make sound business decisions.
Business Research Methodology
The first part of the course provides an introduction to basic epistemological issues in the theory of science,
as applied to social science research generally and to research in international business specifically. This understanding will be used to critically discuss and evaluate common approaches and methodologies in international business research. Models, theories and empirical research on foreign direct investment and firm internationalization provide focal examples for this discussion, but other central topics in international business will be included too.
The second part of the course focuses on the selection, design and critical evaluation of basic methodologies and techniques in international business research and on the tools and conventions of reporting such research
On completion of the course, students should be able to:
- demonstrate a critical understanding of basic epistemological assumptions underlying contemporary social science research, especially as these applies to research in international business
- describe the nature and historical evolution of international business as an inter-disciplinary field of research
- evaluate the choice and implementation of research methodologies in international business research
- independently apply basic methodologies in such research, including both selection and critical evaluation of secondary sources and techniques for the collection of primary data
- competently apply basic tools and conventions in social scientific research, including the structuring and writing of research reports, referencing, use of tables and diagrams, bibliographic search techniques, etc.
International Business Law
The course provides a basic understanding of the legal framework within which international businesses operate, enables the students to analyse it and explores the rules that govern it. The course looks at private law background to international business transactions. It analyses the regulation of multinational enterprises, international contracts (with particular emphasis on the Convention on the International Sales of Goods – CISG and the EU legislation), as well as international dispute resolution in the shape of litigation and arbitration.
Relation to a Business or an Institutional Setting: the course operates through analyses of different types of companies, international institutions, and supra-national institutions. This will be done primarily through cases included in the required reading.
Relation to International Business or Economics: the course emphasizes the distinction between regulation of regional (EU) and global business activities and focuses primarily on issues arising in the conduct of business activities across borders and how this issues may be resolved through international and domestic dispute resolution.
Research Based Teaching Elements: the lecturer's own research will be included in the lectures. Lectures, exercises and case study discussions
- Identify different kinds of sources of international law and their relative importance.
- Understand the basics of negotiating and writing international sales contracts
- Form awareness of the importance of various international business law issues in the daily life of a corporation
- Explain how international legal disputes can be settled in international tribunals and municipal courts.
- Formulate opinions for the resolution of the problems on the basis of legal arguments that incorporate and correctly apply the relevant sources of law.
Risk Management of Multinational Enterprise: Creating Global Strategic Responsiveness
This course provides an overview of different financial, economic, and strategic exposures faced by multinational organizations engaged in global business activities and considers how the underlying risks can be managed. The risk management topic is perceived from different functional perspectives including international finance, insurance, management accounting, operations management and multinational corporate strategy. A number of formal risk management frameworks and standards are designed to address identifiable risks. We extend these approaches to also consider the ability to deal with uncertainty and unexpected events.
Learning objectives – after completing the course students should be able to:
Characterize and describe the global risk environment of the firm
Identify, measure and monitor multinational financial and economic exposures
Analyze alternative hedging strategies to deal with financial and economic exposures
Identify fundamental operational and strategic risk exposures and assess their
potential effects in future global business scenarios
Assess alternative ways to mitigate and deal with operational and strategic risks under
uncertain and unpredictable multinational market conditions
Consider proper governance of the strategic risk management process in a multinational corporation operating in turbulent global markets
The grading of individual exams will consider the clarity, structure and supportive evidence displayed in the submitted reports with respect to the listed learning objectives. Furthermore, the responses should use tools, models, theories, and logical reasoning deduced from this and other relevant courses, based on clearly defined concepts and data-driven measures. The report should be backed by publicly available data and/or descriptive examples extracted from a variety of secondary sources including annual reports, websites, press releases, industry analyses, professional reports, etc.
The course gives an overview of conventional risk management techniques conceived across different academic disciplines, e.g., finance, economics, insurance, accounting, operations management, organizational behaviour, cognitive psychology, and international business strategy. The course will integrate diverse contributions to better understand the multifaceted underpinnings of the field including standard approaches like Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) frameworks and more unconventional perspectives of High Reliability Organizations (HROs) and Strategic Risk Governance approaches. The course will introduce conventional views on risk management from articles, book chapters, reports, and selective case studies but will also extend the scope of current views towards effective management of the unpredictable nature of the turbulent global business environment.
Learning objectives – after completing the course students should be able to:
- Characterize and describe the global risk environment of the firm
- Identify, measure and monitor multinational financial and economic exposures
- Analyze alternative hedging strategies to deal with financial and economic exposures
- Identify fundamental operational and strategic risk exposures and assess their potential effects in future global business scenarios
- Assess alternative ways to mitigate and deal with operational and strategic risks under uncertain and unpredictable multinational market conditions
- Consider proper governance of the strategic risk management process in a multinational corporation operating in turbulent global markets
Entrepreneurship and Global Strategy
The course gives a framework for understanding the role of entrepreneurs in shaping global capitalism over the last two centuries. Through a combination of lectures and case study discussions the students will be introduced to the entrepreneurial process and strategic decision-making. Placing business in a broad political, economic and cultural context, the course explores the challenging decisions and ethical dilemmas entrepreneurs have faced in different global and historical settings.
Students will probe analytical tools to identify and make sense of relevant context factors and will apply basic strategy frameworks. Four major themes will be discussed in the course: (i) entrepreneurial processes; (ii) varieties of ownership and governance structures in international business; (iii) the role of entrepreneurs in society; and (iv) waves of international integration/disintegration and their consequences for global buiness.
Theory: The course will introduce theories of entrepreneurship (Schumpeter, Baumol) as well as strategy frameworks (5 Forces, Generic Competitive Strategies, Blue Ocean Strategy.)
Research-Based Teaching: The course includes discussions of entrepreneurial theory and introduces students to the challenges for global business in the context of economic nationalism based on the lecturer's recent research.
After having completed the course the students should be able to:
- synthesize the development of different capitalist societies based on the required reading
- explain and compare different theoretical frameworks and apply them to cases
- analyze case studies by breaking up the sum of information into constituent parts, identify relevant aspects of the situation and study the relationship of the parts to the whole; formulate questions applying relevant theory
- compare different ways how businesses and entrepreneurs interact with their political and cultural context
- evaluate dilemma situations of entrepreneurs, hypothesize about different courses of action and their outcome
Principles of International Marketing
This is the core marketing class in the BSc IB programme. The course takes students from mundane problems in daily marketing activity to discovering the underlying theoretical issues behind marketing as practice and science. The course places heavy emphasis on analysing global cultural and social patterns and their impact on marketing strategy. The basic course goals are therefore to provide a comprehensive analysis of the basic principles of marketing-related activities within firms, with specific consideration given to problems in international marketing. In particular, the impact of cultural differences and macro-social patterns on global marketing activities will be discussed.
As part of this general larger goal of the course, students will gain:
- an understanding of the key components of the global marketing mix and their use in marketing
- knowledge of the role of new product development and market research as key support activities in an overall marketing program
- the ability to assess advantages and disadvantages of various market entry strategies and market entry modes
- knowledge of new forms of global brand communication and consumer behaviour
- knowledge of the role new technologies play in global marketing activities
- an understanding of the role of marketing and of new forms of knowledge and intellectual property right regimes for the competitive advantage of a firm.
The course will cover the following main subject areas:
- What is marketing? Macro- versus micromarketing
- Elements of the international marketing environment
- Global culture and globalization
- Cross-cultural consumer behaviour
- International market research and global market segmentation
- Market entry strategies and ‘psychic distance’
- Market entry modes, export behaviour and franchising
- Competitive advantage and knowledge (global & local)
- International product mix and the global brand
- Advertising, public relations and global marketing communications
- Supply chain strategies and distribution channels
- Pricing decisions in international marketing
- Relationships, networks and partnerships in international marketing
The above described course content directly supports the four learning goals of the Bachelor in International Business: Practical application of theory, learning in relation to practical business settings (learning through case studies), a clear focus on an international economic and business perspective, and research-based teaching (fulfilled through class readings which incorporate contemporary research articles in the field of international marketing).
The learning objectives of this course include skills such as organizing one’s thoughts and arguments in a logical sequence, based on evidence and supported by examples. Writing skills (spelling, grammar, punctuation, language skills) are as important as cognitive skills and students will have to demonstrate the ability to organize their arguments in a structured (paragraph and sentence construction) as well as critical fashion. After having attended the course, students should:
- have a clear understanding of the structure of theories and models regarding the specific nature of international consumer markets, brands and consumer behaviour.
- have the ability to generate management-relevant insights into how marketing theories and models can help firms create a sustainable competitive advantage in domestic and international markets.
- be able to critically reflect on these theories and models in order to explain possible solutions and choices in marketing-related situations.
- be able to use theories and models of international marketing in order to analyse and explain various firm strategies regarding product policy, pricing, distribution and communication.
Corporate governance concerns the way firms are directed and controlled. The regulatory backlash caused by corporate scandals and the financial crisis, as well as growing public and media pressure on companies to act in a ‘socially responsible’ way, have put stakeholder engagement on top of the corporate agenda. Regardless of international business managers’ individual philosophical stance on what the role of business in society should be, these pressures cannot go unmanaged and need to be addressed in a strategic manner. A thorough understanding of the corporate governance demands companies face today is therefore a necessary prerequisite in any international business function.
This course gives an introduction to the theoretical foundations of corporate governance, develops awareness of associated practical problems, and provides an overlook of governance systems around the world. The intertwine of legal, economic, political, and psychological factors affecting how firms and markets are run and controlled creates complexity and challenges our ability to state and solve problems practically as well as intellectually. The course provides students with a toolbox and skills for evaluating firms from a governance point of view.
By the end of the course, students should be able to critically evaluate selected theories within the fields of corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, and business ethics, as well as discuss how these frameworks can be applied to concrete business situations:
- Explain, combine and analytically discuss the theories, frameworks, models and concepts presented in the course.
- Critically discuss the role of business in society, in the context of globalised markets and internationally active firms.
- Identify business challenges and opportunities arising from internal corporate governance challenges and external stakeholder pressures.
- Using the concepts and frameworks discussed in the course, sketch responses to these challenges and opportunities, and reason why those responses would pass the “good business ethics” test of critical observers.
Global Supply Chain Management
Supply Chain Management and modern business logistics provide theoretical as well as practical approaches for direct or indirect value creation by improving performance and/or reducing costs. Key is the alignment, configuration, integration and coordination of flows across manufacturers, retailers, and logistics service providers that are involved in such chains. This means that the institutional setting of a single firm and its business functions as well as the context and environment of the supply chain as a whole needs to be taken into account. Using mini-cases and company cases, the course is designed to reflect and to illustrate in different modules these different perspectives of whole supply chains as well as that of the involved single actor’s and respective that of single business functions like sourcing, production, or distribution. The course thus provides a basic understanding on theory and conceptions of modern business logistics and Supply Chain Management and helps to understand the different institutional settings of a total supply chain view as well as that on the single actors and their company functions.
Further on, globalization implies both globalization of operations (e.g. sourcing, production and logistics) and that of consumption. Customers and suppliers in one country are different from those in another, just as transport, inventory, warehousing, distribution and communication systems differ to cater to specific business environments. Since the scope of supply chain management spans the entire set of organizations from procurement of materials and components to delivery of finished products to the end consumer, it poses additional complexity in the form of extended supply chains where, for example, a company develops a new product in the United States, sources and manufactures it in Asia, and distributes and markets it in the US, Asia and Europe. Therefore, setting up and managing international or global supply chains means that sourcing, production and distribution have to consider differences and similarities between various markets to set up synergized transport, inventory, warehousing, distribution, and communication systems. The course will take especially the logistics and supply chain challenges that result from such global environments into account.
The course built first on the basic theoretical fundaments of modern logistics and supply chain management, such as systems thinking, flow thinking, integration as well as other concepts that are adapted for logistics and Supply Chain Management issues. Across the views of different involved actors, students learn to apply these theoretical building blocks on different levels of description and analysis, for instance by applying arguments for different types of global supply chain designs and strategies, information sharing initiatives in the chain, or selecting distribution and transportation networks. Beyond the theoretical background provided in the introductory sessions, the course emphasizes on the ‘how to’ aspects of global supply chain management. Each session therefore strives on creating a toolbox for the students that may be applied in future practical settings, for dealing with basic supply chain management issues such as ‘partnerships’, ‘information sharing’, and ‘supplier selection’.
The course includes case-based and mini-case-based application of key theoretical and operational concepts in order to understand the global supply chain management practices of leading companies such as Ford, Procter & Gamble, Metro, Tesco, or Toyota. Finally, this course has also been designed keeping in mind the faculty’s research competence in the field of global supply chain management. Problem settings and examples of past and current research projects will be applied to illustrate theories, specific context and related supply chain challenges. Where appropriate additionally guest speakers will be invited to support the distinct perspectives or to relate their research to the management of global supply chains. Guest lectures in the past have included themes such as ‘product and process innovation’, and ‘Efficient Consumer Response’ in the global supply chain. Future guests might speak about “Globalization of Retailing Supply Chains”, or “RfID Applications in global Supply Chains”.
Key objective of the course is to introduce students into the business challenges and solutions of supply chain management and modern business logistics in a global environment. Students should learn to identify and analyze specific basic and global supply chain management problems and relate it to theories, methods, and justifiable solutions. For the application and discussion of solutions they should acquire knowledge on concepts, structures, tools and processes, which are necessary for the management of global supply chains as well as on their application context of global supply chain management issues. Finally the students should learn to demonstrate the use of “flow thinking” and SCM terminology that is central to this course. Upon course completion students should be able to: Identify management issues, both physical & technical and managerial & behavioral, in global supply chains and logistics operations and relate them to key theories, models and concepts of supply chain management and modern business logistics. Outline ways of factoring complexity in business situations arising from international business and inter-organizational relationships in operations like logistics, sourcing, and production Apply basic theoretical ideas and concepts by using taught methods such as mapping global supply chains in terms of flows and scope and demonstrating comprehension of SCM concepts and terminology Distinguish challenges in global procurement, production and logistics issues and analyze, both qualitatively and quantitatively, basic trade-offs such as global supplier, site and transport mode selection. Students shall be assessed against these learning objectives of the course. To gain the highest grade in the exam, students must be able to select and recall basic appropriate models and concepts from the curriculum and present them in a comprehensive and well-argued way that may also put their findings into new perspectives.