Dear Colleagues,

At the request of some authors who wish to work on their papers during the holiday period, the editors have decided to extend the submission deadline of the ABM special issue and conference below to 20th January 2016.

We hope you will consider submitting a paper to this special issue and conference in London. If you know some colleagues who might be interested, we would be grateful if you could please forward this to them.  

All updates will be made available on the conference website

May we take this opportunity to wish you a happy Christmas and productive new year!

Lutao, Dylan & Xiaolan





**** Apologies for Cross Posting ****


Call for Papers for a Conference on Innovation in China &


a Special Issue of Asian Business & Management:


“Local Context and Challenges of Innovation in China” 


Full Paper submission date: 15 December 2015  20th January 2016

Conference date: 11-12 April 2016, Queen Mary, University of London (central London)

Conference website:


Guest Editors: 

Dr. Lutao Ning, Queen Mary, University of London, UK [log in to unmask]

Dr. Dylan Sutherland, University of Durham UK [log in to unmask]

Prof. Xiaolan Fu, University of Oxford [log in to unmask]


The goal of this special issue is to encourage research that can deepen our understanding of how Chinese firms innovate and compete in the rapidly changing environment of present-day China and the international context. Submitted articles should take into account the specificities of the Chinese context and, in doing so look to generate conclusions about the specific nature of innovation in China. 


China’s economic success is intertwined with efforts to develop science and technology, which have long been regarded as a key means of catching-up with developed countries (Fu, 2015; Ning, 2009b). Technological upgrading or catch-up requires firms to engage in fundamental changes within their organizations and also draw upon ideas and resources from their environment while simultaneously adapting to global competition (Chesbrough, 2013). Local context has been argued to play a critical role, as its variation can lead to different environments that shape both the scope and scale of firms’ activities (Meyer et al., 2011). More importantly, specific local contexts and business systems (cf. Witt & Redding, 2014) may shape the mechanisms of inter-organizational interactions and thus affect the extent of collective learning and localized knowledge spill-overs essential for firm innovation. There has been much effort made to delineate the local context for firm innovation, which can be found in various research streams. These include the literatures on  inter-firm knowledge exchange efficiency within industrial clusters (Arikan, 2009; Harrison et al., 1996); the impact of national and regional innovation systems on firm innovation (Lundvall, 2007); the “triple helix” model among university-industry-government relationships (Park and Leydesdorff, 2010; Sutherland, 2005); regional and geographical characteristics that affect firm innovation (Crescenzi et al., 2012; Letaifa and Rabeau, 2013); and the role of MNEs and local industrial agglomeration (Lamin and Livanis, 2013; Wang et al., 2014). More recently, there has been an examination of the national environments and business systems that are favourable for firms to improve innovation performance through exports and outward foreign direct investment (Anderson et al., 2015; Ning, 2009; Ning and Sutherland, 2012; Sutherland and Ning, 2011; Wang et al., 2013).  In short, the local context and specific business systems of the Chinese market may lead its firms to pursue particular types of innovative activities and processes that might not typically be observed in developed economies. 


For this special issue we welcome both theoretical and empirical contributions that can broadly enhance our understanding of innovation in Chinese business. It is essential that papers make a meaningful contribution to theory.  They must further consider what is unique and ‘Chinese’ about business innovation and innovation management practices in China and how the Chinese business system may shape these approaches. We also welcome papers in the broader area of innovation in the Chinese context or that facilitate the development of agendas for further research in China. Such topics may include, but are not limited to: 


       National and regional innovation systems , industrial policies and their impacts on firm innovation strategies and performance  

       The middle-income trap and challenge of innovation in the Chinese business system 

       Industrial clusters and science parks, and firms’ location strategies for innovation 

       Economic conditions and the business environment for innovation, their relation to firm-level innovation practices 

       Innovation and spin-offs from universities and public institutions in China 

       State and private ownership and governance structures that affect innovation  

       Big business groups and their innovation strategies, more generally the relationship between the domestic business environment and innovation strategies

       Creation of firm and organisational innovation 

       Business model innovation of Chinese firms 

       Innovation in business creation, process and incubators 

       Foreign direct investment, multinational enterprises and technology spill-overs 

       Outward FDI and internationalisation of innovation strategies 

       Open innovation and technology networks 

       Entrepreneurship, social innovation and start-ups 

       Knowledge management, talent management, human resource related issues 


Supporting Conference  


To support this special issue, we will organise a conference to take place at Queen Mary, University of London from 11-12 April 2016. Shortlisted papers will be invited to participate in the conference. Although attendance is not mandatory, it will provide an opportunity for further feedback and paper development (


Submission format

Manuscripts should be prepared according to the journal guidelines and will be subject to double-blind peer review. All manuscripts should be a minimum length of 6,000 words and a maximum of length of 10,000 words.  

Please submit your paper to both the conference submission system and Asian Business & Management’s submission system by 15 December 2015  20th January 2016

Conference submission system:  

Asian Business & Management submission system:  

See conference website for details:  


Important dates

Full Paper submission: 15 December 2015  20th January 2016

Conference acceptance notification: 15 January 2016  no later than early February for submission made after 15 December 2015

Conference date: 11-12 April 2016, Queen Mary, University of London, UK

Deadline for submission of final journal manuscripts to publisher: mid-September 2016

Likely publication date: December 2016



Anderson, J., Sutherland, D., Severe, S., 2015. An event study of home and host country patent generation in Chinese MNEs undertaking strategic asset acquisitions in developed markets. International Business Review. 

Arikan, A.T., 2009. Interfirm knowledge exchanges and the knowledge creation capability of clusters. Academy of Management Review 34, 658-676. 

Chesbrough, H., 2013. Open business models: How to thrive in the new innovation landscape. Harvard Business Press. 

Crescenzi, R., Rodríguez-Pose, A., Storper, M., 2012. The territorial dynamics of innovation in China and India. Journal of Economic Geography 12, 1055-1085. 

Harrison, B., Kelley, M.R., Gant, J., 1996. Innovative firm behavior and local milieu:

exploring the intersection of agglomeration, firm effects, and technological change. Economic Geography, 233-258. 

Lamin, A., Livanis, G., 2013. Agglomeration, catch-up and the liability of foreignness in emerging economies. Journal of International Business Studies 44, 579-606. 

Letaifa, S.B., Rabeau, Y., 2013. Too close to collaborate? How geographic proximity could impede entrepreneurship and innovation. Journal of Business Research 66, 2071-2078. 

Lundvall, B.Ĺ., 2007. National innovation systems—analytical concept and development tool. Industry and Innovation 14, 95-119. 

Meyer, K.E., Mudambi, R., Narula, R., 2011. Multinational Enterprises and Local Contexts: The Opportunities and Challenges of Multiple Embeddedness. Journal of Management Studies 48, 235-252. 

Ning, L., 2009. China's Leadership in the World ICT Industry: A Successful Story of Its" Attracting-in" and" Walking-out" Strategy for the Development of HighTech Industries? Pacific Affairs, 67-91. 

Ning, L., Sutherland, D., 2012. Internationalization of China's private sector MNEs: An analysis of the motivations for foreign affiliate formation. Thunderbird International Business Review 54, 169-182. 

OECD, 2014. OECD Science, Technology, and Industry outlook. OECD Publishing.  OECD, 2013.The People’s Republic of China:  avoiding the middle-income trap: policies for sustained and inclusive growth. OECD Publishing

Park, H.W., Leydesdorff, L., 2010. Longitudinal trends in networks of university– industry–government relations in South Korea: The role of programmatic incentives. Research Policy 39, 640-649. 

Sutherland, D., 2005. China's science parks: production bases or a tool for institutional reform? Asia Pacific Business Review 11, 83-104. 

Sutherland, D., Ning, L., 2011. Exploring ‘onward-journey’ ODI strategies in China's private sector businesses. Journal of Chinese Economic and Business Studies 9, 43-65. 

Wang, Y., Cao, W., Zhou, Z., Ning, L., 2013. Does external technology acquisition determine export performance? Evidence from Chinese manufacturing firms.

International Business Review 22, 10791091. 

Wang, Y., Ning, L., Li, J., Prevezer, M., 2014. Foreign Direct Investment Spillovers and the Geography of Innovation in Chinese Regions: The Role of Regional Industrial Specialization and Diversity. Regional Studies, 1-18. 

Witt, M.A. & Redding, G. (eds.) (2014) The Oxford handbook of Asian business systems. Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK.



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