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International Business

This is the study programme for 2020/2021.

This is an introductory course to international business, delivered in English. Markets, trade and corporations are becoming increasingly global. This is evident in many ways: the barriers to trade continue to fall, trade between countries continues to rise and multinational enterprises are ever more dominant in the world economy. At the same time we see tendencies of increasing nationalism and protectionism. This course introduces you to the unique competitive environment in which international business takes place, the status of internationalization of business today and the strategy and management challenges faced by corporations that operate in an international setting.
Students on this course are expected to gain an understanding of the managerial challenges and opportunities confronting firms competing internationally, to have knowledge of the main theories in this field, to be able to discuss and analyze relevant problems in this area and to be able to present the main elements of this course in an empirical assignment.

Learning outcome

Students are expected to master the following issues after attending this course:
  • How globalization affects markets and economic policies.
  • Why international trade and investments are on the rise, and the main characteristics of international trade patterns.
  • How businesses are affected by economic policies and regulations at the national and at the supranational (EU) level.
  • The main ethical and moral issues involved in international business operations.
  • Main strategic options for international businesses.

Upon completion of this course, students will:
  • Be familiar with basic concepts and trends related to international business activity.
  • Understand the environment within which international business activity takes place: the economic, political, legal and cultural environment in which international firms operate.
  • Be familiar with international institutions relevant to international companies (e.g. EU, International Monetary Fund, World Trade Organization, G20).
  • Have a greater knowledge of the theories that provide explanations for global business activities (e.g. trade and investment theories, global product life cycle, competitive advantage of nations).
  • Understand sustainable value creation, and paying attention to the effects a business has on the sustainability of its social and natural environment.


The main contents of this course are as follows:
  • The historical background of international business
  • A comparative approach: market characteristics, regulatory frameworks and environmental constraints
  • The role of international institutions in international business with the main focus on EU institutions
  • Patterns of international trade and investments
  • Sustainable and ethical value creation
  • Theories explaining global business and globalization
  • Case studies relating theories to real contexts

Required prerequisite knowledge



Home assignment and Written exam
Weight Duration Marks Aid
Home assignment2/52 weeksA - FAll.
Written exam3/54 hoursA - FDictionary.

Course teacher(s)

Course coordinator
Thomas Laudal

Method of work

There are lectures once a week and normally one guest lecturer every semester. There are also two seminars (more informal gatherings) where we discuss the assignment and how to prepare for the exam. The estimated work hours in this course is as follows:
- Lectures (13): 38 hours
- Reading course literature and preparing for lectures: 144 hours.
- Attending seminars (2): 4 hours.
- Work on the assignment: 48 hours.
- Summing up and repetition before the exam: 32 hours.
The total work load in this course is estimated to be 250-300 hours.

Open to

Business Administration - Bachelor's Degree Programme
Business Administration - Master of Science (5 years)


Literatur will be published as soon as it has been prepared by the course coordinator/teacher

This is the study programme for 2020/2021.

Sist oppdatert: 11.08.2020