Call for Papers 
AIB US-NE 2015 Frontier Conference: Bringing the Political Economy Back In

Submission Deadline: July 31 2015


We are pleased to announce this year’s Academy of International Business (AIB) Frontier Conference “Bringing the Political Economy Back In”, organized by the US-Northeast (NE) Chapter of AIB – the leading association of scholars and practitioners in the field of international business – together with the College of Management at University of Massachusetts Boston (UMB)The meeting will take place October 22-24, 2015, at the Campus Center of UMB in downtown Boston – a city with a rich cultural and historical heritage, and a global hub for education, science and technology. The conference includes regular sessions, a doctoral consortium and a paper development workshop. Submission deadline for papers and proposals is July 31. Details can be found below and on the conference website: 


Conference Theme


This conference is designed as an interdisciplinary platform for intellectual exploration around the complex relationship between international business (IB) and the political economy. The decisions and operations of multinational enterprises (MNEs) and local firms are affected by institutional, economic, and political structures and processes at multiple scales - local, regional, and global. Moreover, MNEs increasingly participate as political actors as they interact with state and non-state actors around issues such as the natural environment, inequality, labor and gender, human rights, and international trade and investment agreements. In addition, other organizations such as NGOs, non-profits, social enterprises etc. increasingly have transnational impact through their interaction with MNEs and other actors on these issues. To examine these dynamics in more depth, this conference brings together senior and junior scholars from IB, management, sociology, political science, women’s studies, and economics who share an interest in ‘Bringing the Political Economy Back In’.

Guiding Questions and Conference Features


How do – and should - MNEs respond to and affect these political and economic dynamics? What roles do MNEs play as political actors, along with NGOs and other stakeholders, in governance, for example, through corporate social responsibility efforts, standards, lobbying, and in their own resource allocation decisions? We invite you to participate in this exciting conversation. The conference will feature a Doctoral Consortium and Paper Development Workshop, special panels and keynote speeches, and topic-centered sessions, as well as lunch and dinner events. The conference will also address more conventional IB topics. We are open to a broad range of theoretical approachesboth critical and traditional, from IB, organization theory, sociology, political science, international political economy, and other perspectives.


Special Guests, Panels and Hosting Team

Several well-known scholars from International Business, Sociology, Economics, Women’s Studies, and Political Science will participate as keynote speakers and panelists. Keynote speakers include: Jonathan Doh (Villanova U, Editor-in-Chief of Journal of World Business), Cynthia Enloe (Clark U) and John Cantwell (Rutgers U, Editor-in-Chief of JIBS). For the Doctoral Consortium on October 22, we look forward to the following mentors: Jonathan Doh, Ram Mudambi (Temple U, Incoming President of AIB), Rajneesh Narula (John H Dunning Chair of International Business, U Reading) and Mona Makhija (Ohio State U, Senior Editor of JIBS). In addition, the conference will feature four panels on October 23/24 focusing on political economy challenges to IB research; global governance and the role of multinational enterprises; international development, violence and gender; and climate change, IB and global politics of energy.  On top of the scholars listed above, panels will be complemented by (alphabetical order): Frank Ackerman (Tufts U), Elora Chowdhury (UMB), Kade Finnoff (UMB), Dirk Matten (York U), Craig Murphy (UMB), Ravi Ramamurti (Northeastern U) and Timothy Shaw (UMB).

The Frontier conference will be hosted by faculty and students of the UMB Organizations and Social Change (OSC) Research Group : Alessia Contu, Chacko Kannothra, David Levy, Banu Ozkazanc-Pan, Suhaib Riaz, Vesela Veleva and Chris Whynacht, in collaboration with the AIB US-NE Chapter, chaired by Stephan Manning, as well as faculty from other UMB departments, including Economics and Political Science.


Paper Submissions


We invite submissions of either ‘short papers’ (around 3,000 words) or preliminary full papers (around 10,000 – 12,000 words) for individual presentations that link, in interesting and novel ways, various aspects of the local and global political economy to international business. Special topics may include: local and global institutions; governance; CSR; shared value; MNEs as political actors; interactions between MNEs, states, and civil society; emerging varieties of capitalism; transnational crime; gender, race, and ethnicity in the global economy; political and institutional risks; climate change responses; sustainability standards; tax havens and other global financial system issues; intellectual property rights; labor and human rights; migration and transnational networks; conflict, violence, peacemaking and reconstruction;economic and social inequality; transnational movements, communities and networks; post- and neo-colonial relations.

We also invite submissions that bring in institutional and political aspects to more conventional IB topics, such as theory of the MNE; managing geographic and institutional distance; international joint ventures and alliances; political risk, lobbying, and corruption; international expansion, sourcing and foreign entry modes; learning and knowledge management; and managing in cross-cultural contexts. 

We are interested in both theoretical and empirical work, using either qualitative or quantitative methods. Based on paper submissions, we will group accepted papers into tracks and select paper discussants within each track. Papers should be submitted through the Conference Website (up to three submissions allowed per author): We will award the Best Student Paper, the Best Paper on the Conference Theme, and a Best Reviewer Award (submitters are expected to sign up as reviewers).


Deadline for submission of short or preliminary full papers is July 31 2015.


Upon the acceptance of short or preliminary full papers, we strongly encourage the submission of final full papers by August 31. However, if the short/preliminary paper provides important insights to the conference theme, that may serve as sufficient for the conference as well. Final submissions will be presented by authors and discussed by domain experts at the conference.

More details about paper submission and conference registration can be found on the website at http://conference2015.aibne.netFor any inquiries about the CfP or conference registration please send emails to co-host Chacko Kannothra: [log in to unmask]


We are looking forward to your submissions and to welcoming you to the AIB US-NE 2015 Frontier Conference at UMass Boston in October!

Stephan Manning 
Associate Professor of Management
University of Massachusetts Boston 
College of Management
100 Morrissey Boulevard
Boston, MA 02125-3393, USA

Chair of Academy of International Business (AIB)​ US-Northeast Chapter