Dear colleagues

Please find below a call for papers. Note that GSJ was very recently ranked 19th out of 250 journals in Business and Management in the Social Sciences Citation Index with a 2-year impact factor of 3.694. You can also find this information through

Call for Papers for a Special Issue

Strategic Management in Africa

Submission Deadline: November 30, 2015

Guest Editors:

Michael J. Mol, Copenhagen Business School (Denmark) Christian Stadler, University of Warwick (United Kingdom) Tunji Adegbesan, Lagos Business School (Nigeria) Africa Ariņo, IESE Business School (Spain)

Background and Purpose

Africa is on the rise. Nigeria and Zambia have the highest proportion of early stage entrepreneurs, African multinationals like Dangote Group and MTN start to get attention in the press, and recently the US government held a business summit in order to catch up with China's influence on the continent. Foreign direct investment levels in Africa are reaching record levels and are estimated to have been above $80 Billion in 2014. While Africa is growing, it does not necessarily follow the same path as other economies. For example, mobile phone based technology and the informal economy play a particularly significant role. Some parts of Africa continue to face extremely challenging conditions, including wars, famines, diseases, and repressive regimes, although other parts are increasingly overcoming those conditions. These positive and negative dynamics provide very interesting opportunities for scholars to study new phenomena and advance theory. Yet, an increase in scholarly work devoted to strategic management in Africa has only started recently (e.g. Uchenna & Mair, 2014; Ozcan & Santos, 2014; Acquaah, 2012; Meyer, Estrin, Bhaumik, Peng, 2009). A clear overall research agenda is still lacking. Through this special issue we seek to provide a platform for creating that agenda for top academic journals.

The African marketspace is an increasingly attractive place to compete in. Yet Africa also poses lots of challenges, for instance because it is widely perceived to suffer from political instability, corruption, poverty, and ongoing military, religious and ethnic conflicts many of which extend across country borders. But these descriptions by no means apply uniformly to Africa. This makes strategic management in Africa both complex and interesting to study. While data collection in or on Africa can be challenging, the paucity of research in this space also means that there is still a lot to learn. Hence studies that make substantial connections to real-world cases and data are particularly attractive. Scholars based in Africa who want to submit their work are invited to get in touch with the editors well before the deadline to seek guidance.

Research Questions

In line with the mission of the Global Strategy Journal, this special issue asks questions of a global nature, i.e. we look at cross-border activities that take place in multiple countries and/or are integrated across borders. We expect that submissions are cutting-edge research, break new conceptual ground and address real-world phenomena regarding strategic management in Africa, but are open to a wide range of topics. Examples of topics that fall under the domain of this call, which are illustrative at best and are not intended to define the boundaries of this special issue, include:

1. African firms in international perspective. Are there differences between African firms and host multinationals in terms of how they compete and what their objectives are? Are there examples of African multinationals that are successfully internationalizing beyond Africa and what are their characteristics?

2. Foreign direct investment. Why are some African countries particularly successful in attracting FDI from China and other emerging as well as developed countries, and why are firms not investing more? How does investment in Africa compare to investment in other parts of the world?

3. Entry modes in Africa. How do African characteristics affect the likelihood of investment by multinational enterprises? Are they more likely to choose low risk entry modes such as alliances, joint ventures, and licensing? What is the role of political (in)stability?

4. Innovation and technology in Africa. In what ways does innovation occur in Africa? Can frugal or reverse African innovations be scaled beyond the continent? Can Africa use online markets to circumvent institutional voids?

5. Growth strategies in Africa. How does entrepreneurship in Africa compare to what we know about entrepreneurship elsewhere? In what ways do firms use mergers and acquisitions in the African context?

6. Institutional and cultural conditions in Africa. Given formal institutional and cultural differences, to what extent is it feasible to create pan-African strategies? How do extreme conditions, like diseases (Ebola, AIDS) or religious and tribal conflicts, affect strategies of firms?

7. Africa as a market. What leads firms to be more or less successful in the African market? To what extent can new markets in Africa be created by innovative firms? How do firms operate in the informal economy and are informal economy firms international?

8. Africa as a supply base. To what extent and how are firms using Africa for purposes of offshoring and outsourcing? Can we identify any emerging clusters and what do these look like?

9. Africa as a knowledge base. What new knowledge do firms gain in Africa and to what extent is such knowledge transferable elsewhere? For instance, what is the strategic value of an African practice like Ubuntu?

10. Firms and governments in Africa. How do firms deal with local institutions when creating their strategies in Africa? For instance, do some firms deliberately work with governments, while others try to fly under the radar and avoid government involvement altogether?

11. Business and society in Africa. What is the impact of organizational strategies on economic development and other societal level indicators in Africa? What expectations exist around social responsibility in Africa and how do firms meet these? What role do NGOs play in relation to business in Africa?

12. Managing subsidiaries in Africa. How do Multinational Enterprises manage their African subsidiaries and what role do those subsidiaries play globally? What staffing challenges do they face and how are these resolved?

Submission Instructions

The deadline for submission of papers is November 30, 2015. All manuscripts will be reviewed as a cohort for this special issue. All submissions will go through the regular double-blind review process at GSJ and follow the standard norms and processes that have been established by the journal (see for more information). It is the intention to publish the special issue in a fast track so accepted papers will appear significantly quicker than normal.

More information:

To obtain additional information, please contact the special issue editors:

* Michael J. Mol, Copenhagen Business School ([log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>) * Christian Stadler, University of Warwick ([log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>) * Tunji Adegbesan, Lagos Business School ([log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>) * Africa Ariņo, IESE Business School ([log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>)

For questions about submitting to the special issue please contact the GSJ Managing Editor, Sara DiBari ([log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>).

Dr. Michael J. Mol
Professor of Strategic and International Management
Department of Strategic Management and Globalization
Copenhagen Business School<>

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