2018 SYSBS International Symposium on Frontier Management Research

— International Entrepreneurship in a Digital Era

Guangzhou, December 12, 2018


Second Call for Papers or Proposals

The Business School of Sun Yat-sen University (SYSBS) is pleased to announce its 2018 annual international symposium on frontier management research in Guangzhou (SYSBS campus), China on December 12, 2018. This year’s theme is international entrepreneurship in a digital era. The convergence of digitization and globalization creates a new global normal, fortifying deeper, broader, and more intricate interconnections between nations, businesses and individuals. This connectivity redefines who participates in globalization, how international entrepreneurship is undertaken, and how new entrepreneurship capabilities must be built. This global new normal raises a series of complex issues that may challenge existing international entrepreneurship theories and conclusions as it changes ways of tapping global customers, organizing global operations, and networking with ecosystem partners.

Globalization was once considered only for large, well-established, Western economies, but digital globalization reduces the minimum scale needed to operate at this level. As a result, small businesses and entrepreneurs (i.e., mini- or micro-MNEs) can expand their reach. Digital platforms provide new entrants with a “plug-and-play” infrastructure and opportunities to place themselves in front of a vast global customer base that knows no limitations. Similarly, startups are more likely to be “born global” – birthed into an ecosystem that integrates not only digital tools, platforms, and communication channels, but also tightly-coupled connections with international customers, suppliers, capital, industry designers, professional service providers, and freelancers (for web development, graphic design and marketing, for example). Start-ups are already demonstrating the ability to operate fluidly across geographic boundaries. Digitization not only reflects cross-border information and data flow but transforms flows of physical goods into new digital ones and creates digital platforms that enable small firms and even individual entrepreneurs to play on a global stage.

Entrepreneurs often benefit from their network relationships when internationalizing. The digital era connects geographically dispersed entrepreneurs, making their access to opportunities (e.g., resources, knowledge, technologies, and markets) and resource assembly easier. Further, the digital infrastructures that underlie global platforms (including crowdsourcing and crowdfunding platforms) represent new forms of global connectivity that offer rapid access to two critical entrepreneurial resources—novel ideas/expertise and capital. In sum, digitization facilitates international entrepreneurship opportunities and weakens traditional mandates for needed resources.

An array of interesting questions awaits scholars (and practitioners). For example, from an international entrepreneurship perspective, the digital era offers a novel context to study “accelerated internationalization”. Co-specialization provides opportunities for new firms to come into existence, survival and growth. The said global normal provides them with the infrastructure needed to instantly reach distant established markets and to capture value. The existence of such specialized infrastructure also reduces the costs of conducting business, lowering the perceived risks of international expansion decisions. What does it take to make such co-specialization happen? How should resources-weak new ventures manage global risks in accelerating their international expansion? While digitization, including global online or e-commerce platform, furnishes more opportunities, how should international entrepreneurs deal properly with their dependence on some tremendously large and powerful platform leading companies? What should be done to ambidextrously balance between competition and collaboration with global eco-system players and between exploitation and exploration in accelerated internationalization?

We welcome full-fledged papers as well as abstracts/proposals that broadly deal with international entrepreneurship in a digital era. We encourage submissions that address motives, processes and strategies involving various aspects of international entrepreneurship for, nascent or established and large or small, firms. We particularly welcome submissions that address digitally enabled new forms and new players in global competition. We also invite submissions that tackle on international entrepreneurship by emerging market firms. These firms have been keen to participating in digitalized globalization. Are there any peculiar paths, processes and practices that differentiate them from established MNEs or from international entrepreneurs from advanced economies?

This conference is intended to attract papers or abstracts/proposals that will lead the discourse on some fresh or new perspectives on international entrepreneurship in a new era of digitalized globalization. Submissions should extend and deepen our understanding of some new perspectives across multiple domains—entrepreneurship, innovation, organizational behavior, international business, strategic management, operations management, and the like—and at multiple levels of analysis, such as country, industry, organization, and group. To this end, we invite papers or abstracts/proposals (3-5 pages) relating to the conference theme. Only original, unpublished work is sought.

The conference is featured with several world-renowned keynote speakers who are the authority in the field, such as Prof. Shaker Zahra (University of Minnesota), Prof. Gerry George (Singapore Management University), Prof. Chris Marquis (Cornell University), Prof. Oded Shenkar (Ohio State University), and Prof. Yadong Luo (University of Miami). The conference will also recognize 2-3 best paper awards based on the quality of the paper submissions.  

Please submit your papers or abstracts/proposals IN ENGLISH via an online submission system. All submitters of the conference should create an account and then submit the documents at the conference’s website: http://en.hudongxuetang.com/m/PESML .



Paper and abstract/proposal submission deadline:     November 15, 2018

Author notification of accepted presentations:            November 20, 2018

Conference registration deadline:                                   November 15, 2018




Yadong Luo (University of Miami) & Oded Shenkar (Ohio State University)



Guangzhong Li, Weiwen Li, Xin Qin & Li Jiang



The conference is featured with several world-renowned keynote speakers who are the authority in the field.

Dr. Oded Shenkar is currently the Ford Motor Company Chair in Global Business Management and Professor of Management and Human Resources at the Fisher College of Business, the Ohio State University, where he heads the international business area. Professor Shenkar has published a hundred scientific articles in leading journals such as Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Applied Psychology, Human Relations, Journal of International Business Studies, Strategic Management Journal, and Harvard Business Review, among many others. His books include Organization and Management in China 1979-1990 (M.E. Sharpe), International Business in China (Routledge, w. L. Kelley), Global Perspectives on Human Resource Management (Prentice-Hall), The Handbook of International Management Research (University of Michigan Press, with B.J. Punnett), International Business (Wiley; Sage -2nd edition- with Yadong Luo), The Handbook of Strategic Alliances (Sage, with Jeff Reuer), The Chinese Century (Wharton School Publishing), which has been translated into twelve languages, and Copycats: how smart companies use imitation to gain a strategic edge (Harvard Business Press), which has been translated into six languages. His work has also been cited by Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Financial Times, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, Daily Mail (UK), Liberation (France), International Herald Tribune, Time, Business Week, Economist, Chief Executive magazine, the Associated Press, Reuters, Nikkei Financial Daily, the China Daily, Reference News (China), and The China Business Weekly, as well as on radio (e.g., NPR, CBS) and TV (BBC, CNN, Reuters, ABC, Canada Business TV, Korean TV, Bloomberg). Professor Shenkar is a past Vice President and Fellow of the Academy of International Business.


Dr. Gerry George is the Dean of the Lee Kong Chian School of Business at Singapore Management University, and the former Deputy Dean and Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship of Imperial College London. He is also the former editor of the Academy of Management Journal, the leading journal in management and business research from 2013 until 2016. He was awarded a prestigious Professorial Fellowship by the UK's Economic and Social Research Council for his research on low cost innovation and inclusive growth. Gerard George has patenting and licensing, open innovation, design, and business models.


Dr. Shaker A. Zahra is the Department Chair, Robert E. Buuck Chair of Entrepreneurship and Professor of Strategy in the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota. He is also the Academic Director of the Gary S. Holmes Entrepreneurship Center. His research examine the variety of entrepreneurial activities as well as knowledge creation, conversion and absorption processes in global ecosystems.  Widely published and cited, Shaker’s research has appeared in leading academic journals. He is also the winner of the 2014 Global Award for Entrepreneurship Research and has received several grants, award, and honors including 5 honorary PhD degrees. He is Fellow of the Academy of Management.

Dr. Chris Marquis is the Samuel C. Johnson Professor in Sustainable Global Enterprise and Professor of Management at Cornell University and a Distinguished Visiting Professor at Peking University and Shanghai Jiaotong University. Prior to joining Cornell, he worked for 10 years at Harvard Business School. Professor Marquis's teaching and research is focused on how business can have a positive impact on society and the natural environment. He is currently pursuing several streams of research. He also published in Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Administrative Science Quarterly and etc. His research has won a number of national awards, including the 2006 William H. Newman Award for best dissertation across the entire the Academy of Management, the 2006 Louis R. Pondy award for best dissertation in organizational theory from the Academy of Management. Before his academic career, Marquis worked for 6 years in the financial services industry, most recently as Vice President and Technology Manager for a business unit of J.P. Morgan Chase.


Dr. Yadong Luo is the Emery M. Findley Distinguished Chair and Professor at University of Miami. As a fellow of Academy of International Business, Dr. Luo has emerged as the world’s top research scholar in international management since the mid-90s. He has published over 150 articles in major refereed journals in international business and management. He also authored more than a dozen books and about a hundred other publications. His research interests include global corporate strategy, global corporate governance, international joint ventures, and management in emerging economies, among others. Professor Luo’s research record includes seminal pieces on important and timely topics, such as emerging market MNEs, collaboration and co-opetition in international business, business-government relationships, and FDI in emerging markets. Dr. Luo was ranked amongst the world’s most productive and impactful authors in leading international business journals by various journals. Prof. Luo received his Ph.D from Temple University and worked in the government sector before pursuing Ph.D. He is currently senior editor of JIBS and on advisory board of a few other journals. He is the recipient of over a dozen research and teaching awards granted by his universities and professional organizations.

International Conference Hall, MBA Building, Business School, Sun Yat-sen University



08:00-09:00 (60 min)


09:00-09:15 (15 min)

Opening Remark by SYSBS Dean, and Conference Convenors

09:15-09:45 (30 min)

Keynote Speech I by Professor Oded Shenkar

09:45-10:15 (30 min)

Keynote Speech II by Professor Gerry George

10:15-10:35 (20 min)

Coffee break and group photo

10:35-11:05 (30 min)

Keynote Speech III by Professor Shaker A. Zahra 

11:05-11:35 (30 min)

Keynote Speech IV by Professor Chris Marquis

11:35-12:05 (30 min)

Keynote Speech V by Professor Yadong Luo


12:05-14:00 (115 min) Lunch buffet (Venue: Kaifeng Hotel)

5:00 (60 min)

First set of parallel sessions (Venue: Classrooms in MBA Building)

15:00-15:10 (10 min)

Coffee Break

15:10-16:10 (60 min)

Second set of parallel sessions (Venue: Classrooms in MBA Building)

16:10-16:30 (20 min)

Coffee break

16:30-17:30 (60 min)

Meeting keynote speakers Round table Q&As

17:30-18:00 (30 min)

Best paper award ceremony and concluding remark by conference convenors



Like previous symposiums hosted by SYSBS, there will be no registration fee for this year’s symposium. Please visit our conference’s website and submit your registration online: http://en.hudongxuetang.com/m/PESML .

Further information and updates is available at the conference’s website:  http://en.hudongxuetang.com/m/PESML, and the website of Business School of Sun Yat-sen University: http://bus.sysu.edu.cn/.


Contact us at [log in to unmask].


Vivian Jiang

Office of Research & Ph.D./M.Phil. Program

Business School

Sun Yat-sen University

No.135, West Xingang Road, Guangzhou, P.R.China, 510275

Tel:  (+86 20) 8411 2678

Fax: (+86 20) 8403 6924



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