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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2004

Elaine Ramsey, Patrick Ibbotson, Jim Bell and Brendan Gray

Given the growth of services and their importance in the economy, e‐business and the Internet have the potential to increase the competitiveness and growth of small firms…

Abstract

Given the growth of services and their importance in the economy, e‐business and the Internet have the potential to increase the competitiveness and growth of small firms. However, the general pattern is that the smaller the enterprise, the less likely they are to be prepared to adapt their business processes to accommodate this “new” technology. To illustrate the inherent issues this qualitative research utilised various projective techniques: construction, completion, and associative “tests” that have challenged the pseudo‐scientific age of business as a great human “subjective” exercise. A methodology that in the less traditional academic sense is “unusual, intriguing, fun and engaging” is innovatively employed in this small tradable service firm study to facilitate self‐expression among the respondents about particular e‐business scenarios in a less structured, indirect and more imaginative way. Consequently, the depth of the analysis and interpretation generated from the study has provided the researcher with a rich source of new leads and ideas about potential e‐business inhibitors and facilitators among SMEs not previously considered.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 7 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

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Article
Publication date: 9 August 2011

Stephen Young

Abstract

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Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, vol. 18 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1462-6004

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1990

Jim Bell and Stephen Brown

Recent reports on the state ofmanagement education are, typically,critical of the relevance of businessschool offerings to “real world”situations. Furthermore, they…

Abstract

Recent reports on the state of management education are, typically, critical of the relevance of business school offerings to “real world” situations. Furthermore, they stress the need to internationalise the curriculum and develop personal and interpersonal skills through programmes which are more integrated and participative in design. This article discusses the pragmatic approach to international marketing education, which in seeking to address these issues, also recognises the broader role of universities in contributing to economic development.

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Journal of Management Development, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

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Book part
Publication date: 20 January 2011

Sharon Loane and Jim Bell

As part of their growth strategy, many firms choose to expand internationally. Such expansion is an especially important decision for small- and medium-sized enterprises…

Abstract

As part of their growth strategy, many firms choose to expand internationally. Such expansion is an especially important decision for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). These SMEs are vital to China's economy and have grown in importance since the reform and opening-up, measured in terms of size, number, financial status, or profitability. In addition, the Chinese electronics sector plays an important role in the economy. This inquiry explores the internationalisation behaviour of 50 Chinese electronics SMEs. The findings are presented and implications drawn for future research, along with those for policy makers and practitioners.

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1986

Stephen Brown and Jim Bell

A number of British multiple non‐food retailers are represented in Northern Ireland; they include Marks & Spencer, Boots, C & A, the Burton Group, Olympus Sport, Chelsea…

Abstract

A number of British multiple non‐food retailers are represented in Northern Ireland; they include Marks & Spencer, Boots, C & A, the Burton Group, Olympus Sport, Chelsea Girl and others. However, none of the major British grocery chains trade in the province. Our contributors examine the reasons for this and describe the progress of the four principal Northern Irish food multiples — Stewarts, Crazy Prices, Dunnes Stores and Wellworths.

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Retail and Distribution Management, vol. 14 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-2363

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2002

Fred Scharf and Jim Bell

“Live” client‐sponsored projects have been recognised as a useful pedagogic technique in management education. They enable students to apply theoretical concepts in…

Abstract

“Live” client‐sponsored projects have been recognised as a useful pedagogic technique in management education. They enable students to apply theoretical concepts in practice and allow them to develop the necessary knowledge, skills and competencies required for future business careers. This paper describes how this learning approach has been used with a cohort of final year undergraduate students to improve their export management skills and to enhance the learning experience. It evaluates the outcomes from the perspectives of students, the “client” firms and the government support agencies.

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Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 26 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0590

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 2006

Sharon Loane and Jim Bell

The importance of networks in the internationalisation of entrepreneurial firms is widely accepted. However, while the literature tends to focus on the existing networks…

Abstract

Purpose

The importance of networks in the internationalisation of entrepreneurial firms is widely accepted. However, while the literature tends to focus on the existing networks of firms, there is growing evidence that many rapid internationalisers have to build new networks. This cross‐national study investigates the networks of internationalising entrepreneurial firms in Australia, Canada, Ireland and New Zealand.

Design/methodology/approach

A multi‐stage approach and mixed methods were employed. Online sources were used to gather information on 218 internationalising small firms, then an e‐mail instrument was administered to verify data and address information gaps, resulting in 143 usable responses (66 per cent) evenly distributed across locations. A representative sub‐sample of 53 firms was selected for further in‐depth investigation via face‐to‐face interviews with CEOs.

Findings

A high proportion of firms (25 per cent) actively used existing networks to develop their knowledge of international markets and improve their international competitiveness. However, an even larger number (34 per cent) had to build new networks because of the advanced nature of their offering. In‐depth interviews provided rich insights into the nature and scope of the firms' network development activities.

Research limitations/implications

While the sample size is relatively small, the findings are consistent across locations. They suggest that further investigation of network building activities among internationalising entrepreneurial firms is required.

Practical implications

The results have implications on firm strategy, in terms of the strategic nature of network building and the need for systematic approaches. They also are pertinent to public policy in support of internationalisation. In particular, there is a need for support agencies to shift their focus from providing objective knowledge to supporting experiential learning and network development.

Originality/value

The linkage of extant network approaches to the emerging knowledge‐based view (KBV) of internationalisation enhances and advances both perspectives.

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. 23 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 1997

Stephen Brown

States that numerous commentators have contended that we live in degenerate, degraded, decadent and soon‐to‐be discontinued times. Arguably a manifestation of…

Abstract

States that numerous commentators have contended that we live in degenerate, degraded, decadent and soon‐to‐be discontinued times. Arguably a manifestation of “pre‐millennial tension”, this eschatological world‐view seems to be shared by many marketing theorists, for whom the end of marketing is nigh. Describes the background to the Marketing Eschatology Retreat and outlines six different ways in which marketing and eschatology can be related.

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European Journal of Marketing, vol. 31 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 1995

Stephen Young

Provides an overview of the special issue of the EuropeanJournal of Marketing on “Export marketing”. Five basicquestions to be answered in the export marketing area are…

Abstract

Provides an overview of the special issue of the European Journal of Marketing on “Export marketing”. Five basic questions to be answered in the export marketing area are identified. The articles in this special issue should provide a significant stimulus to further conceptual thinking addressed at these export decisions. Discusses policy implications. Developments in policy models await parallel developments in models of export decisions and processes.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 29 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2006

Sharon Loane, Jim Bell and Rod McNaughton

Extant international marketing enquiry has been widely criticised for lacking scope and ambition. Typically, empirical investigations have involved single market studies…

Abstract

Purpose

Extant international marketing enquiry has been widely criticised for lacking scope and ambition. Typically, empirical investigations have involved single market studies employing quantitative methods and survey techniques. Consequently, researchers have been challenged to embrace greater methodological pluralism and broaden their geographical perspectives. This contribution posits that new information communication technologies (ICT), particularly the internet, can significantly improve the robustness of qualitative and mixed‐method international marketing research.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper describes and evaluates the application of ICT in a recent cross‐national enquiry into rapidly internationalising small firms. Online sources were used to gather information on 218 internationalising small firms, in Australia, Canada, Ireland and New Zealand. An e‐mail instrument was then administered to verify this data and address information gaps, resulting in 143 usable responses, evenly distributed across locations. Key emerging themes were identified and a representative sub‐sample of 53 firms was selected for further in‐depth investigation via face‐to‐face interviews with CEOs.

Findings

The authors contend that such technologies can help to refine sample identification and selection procedures, improve response rates and encourage greater respondent “buy‐in” to depth interviews. They also lead to much more targeted lines of enquiry during depth interviews by identifying key research themes and issues, thus enhancing the depth and richness of the insights obtained.

Originality/value

The paper concludes that novel ICT‐enabled research approaches as described herein are particularly effective because, compared to conventional survey methods, they are more user friendly and better received by subjects.

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. 23 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

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