Corporate Governance


In International New Ventures and Born Global Firms, Special issue of International Small Business Journal; Deadline 31 Jan 2022

POSTING TYPE: Calls: Journals

Author: Stephan Gerschewski

Call for Papers


Guest Editors (in alphabetical order):


In an increasingly complex, technology-driven, and networked global economy, corporate governance has become an important factor in managing and leading organisations. With its theoretical roots traversing the various disciplines of economics, finance, accounting, law, sociology, and management (Zattoni & van Ees, 2012; Durisin & Puzone, 2009), corporate governance looks at how firms are governed so that they operate effectively and efficiently (Strange et al., 2009). More specifically, corporate governance can be considered as a set of processes, rules and structures for controlling and leading organisations. Such corporate mechanisms encapsulate how relationships between firm management, company shareholders and stakeholders are governed (Ching et al., 2006).

In the area of international business (IB), many studies have generally examined corporate governance, primarily in the context of multinational corporations (MNCs) (Aguilera et al., 2019; Bhaumik et al., 2019) and internationally mature small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) (Li et al., 2018; Jones et al., 2011; Kuivalainen et al., 2012). Although IB scholars have recognised the importance of corporate governance and executive leadership decision-making in MNC management, studies with a specific focus on young, rapidly internationalising firms, such as international new ventures (INVs) and born global (BG) firms, are surprisingly still relatively few (e.g., Romanello & Chiarvesio, 2019; Gerschewski et al., 2018; Coviello et al., 2017). In addition, we tend to have more of an understanding of how INVs and BGs compete than how they are actually governed (e.g., Zahra, 2014). Consequently, new studies on corporate governance in the context of INVs and BGs have the potential to provide valuable insights into the existing research, which is predominately based on advanced economies (cf., Aguilera et al., 2019; Puthusserry et al., 2021).

There are some issues, which can make INVs and BGs different from MNCs in the context of corporate governance. For example, the traits and characteristics of entrepreneurs – who are entrepreneurs and why people become entrepreneurs affect governance – for example, they may want to be their own boss and/or desire to grow and run an international business. Such motivations are undoubtedly important, and we know from existing literature that motivation in its various guises plays a key role in early firm internationalisation and international entrepreneurship (e.g., Autio et al., 2000). As INVs and BGs often naturally aim for rapid and early international firm growth, they often need (or even exist because of) external capital funding. Further, an entrepreneur’s desire to be their own boss may lead to conflicts with their own Board of Directors and other influential stakeholders.

Ownership characteristics, especially from the family firm perspective, have also been studied in relation to the ownership concentration and stewardship attitudes (e.g., Kontinen & Ojala, 2012). However, a thorough understanding of the roles of board effectiveness (including e.g., returnee board of directors, cf. Lin et al., 2018), individual executives (CEOs and Managing Directors) and TMTs, present increasingly important avenues for research in the context of INVs and BGs given the critical roles of corporate governance structures in both large multinational enterprises (MNEs) and SMEs in a globalised world economy (Aguilera et al., 2019; Bhaumik et al., 2019).

The aims and objectives of this proposed Special Issue (SI) are four-fold: (1) understand what makes BoDs, executive leadership groups, and TMTs effective in INVs and BGs; (2) examine the relationships between BoDs, TMT, structures, processes and effectiveness; (3) build an intellectual framework for discussion related to various dimensions of upper echelons at micro- and macro-levels of corporate governance in INVs and BGs; and (4) advance multi-disciplinary studies by integrating the literature strands of IE, IB, OB, finance, sociology, law, and HR.


This Special Issue welcomes studies examining antecedents, determinants, and processes of corporate governance of INVs and BGs (and other types of early and rapidly internationalising firms) and its respective consequences. Corporate governance in international business has been studied from a number of perspectives, including transaction cost economics, resource-based view, agency theory, and institutional theory (e.g., Aguilera et al., 2019). We encourage contributions from a variety of theoretical lenses, research methods, and studies analysing corporate governance in diverse types of entrepreneurial firms and institutional contexts across different countries and contexts.

Consistent with the above context, we invite manuscripts on topics related to the issues described above, which include, but are not limited, to the following topics:

  • What is the role of the Board of Directors (BoDs) for INVs and BGs?
  • How do BoDs affect the post-entry performance of INVs and BGs?
  • What are the unique features and characteristics in the corporate governance of INVs and BGs as compared to ‘traditional’ firms and large, multinational corporations (MNCs)?
  • To what extent do BoDs help in overcoming the liabilities of smallness, foreignness and help in establishing legitimacy in host markets?
  • What is the role of BoDs for different foreign market entry modes of INVs and BGs?
  • What is the relationship between the strategic orientations of INVs and BGs and corporate governance?
  • How do dynamic managerial capabilities enable INVs and BGs to address corporate control and resource allocation issues?
  • What are the impacts of (foreign) ownership structure and corporate governance on the strategy and management of INVs and BGs?
  • What is the relationship between institutional contexts and BoDs? How do BoDs help in overcoming psychic distance for INVs?
  • Which theoretical approaches can help explain corporate governance of INVs and BGs?
  • What is the role of BoDs, venture capitalists, and angel investors in the early development phases of INVs and BGs?
  • What is the role of returnee board of directors in INVs and BGs?

The deadline for submission of papers is 31 January 2022. The journal submission site will be open for submissions from 21 January 2022. The Special Issue is scheduled to be published in April 2023. Papers must be original and comply with ISBJ submission guidelines. Please refer to for submission guidelines and the link to the online submission system. In the online system please ensure you submit your paper within Manuscript Type: ‘Special Issue: Corporate Governance in INVs and Born Global Firms’.

Questions and informal enquiries should be directed to any of the guest editors (please see contact details at beginning of document).


Aguilera, R.V., Marano, V., and Haxhi, I. (2019). International corporate governance: A review and opportunities for future research. Journal of International Business Studies, 1-42

Autio, E., Sapienza, H. J., and Almeida, J. G. (2000). Effects of age at entry, knowledge intensity, and imitability on international growth. Academy of Management Journal, 43(5), 909-924.

Bhaumik, S., Driffield, N., Gaur, A., Mickiewicz, T., and Vaaler, P. (2019). Corporate governance and MNE strategies in emerging economies. Journal of World Business, 54(4), 234-243.

Ching, K. W., Tan, J. S., and Chi Ching R. G. (2006). Corporate Governance in East Asia. The Road Ahead: Analysis and Case Studies in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea and Japan. Prentice Hall: Singapore.

Coviello, N., Kano, L., and Liesch, P. W. (2017). Adapting the Uppsala model to a modern world: macro-context and microfoundations. Journal of International Business Studies, 48(9), 1151-1164.

Durisin B., and Puzone, F. (2009). Maturation of corporate governance research, 1993-2007: An assessment. Corporate Governance: An International Review, 22(2), 266-291.

Gerschewski, S., Lew, Y. K., Khan, Z., and Park, B. I. (2018). Post-performance of international new ventures: The mediating role of learning orientation. International Small Business Journal, 36(7), 807-828.

Jones, M. V., Coviello, N., and Tang, Y. K. (2011). International Entrepreneurship research (1989-2009): A domain ontology and thematic analysis. Journal of Business Venturing, 26, 632-659.

Kontinen, T., and Ojala, A. (2012). Internationalization pathways among family-owned SMEs. International Marketing Review, 29(5), 496-518.

Kuivalainen, O., Sundqvist, S., Saarenketo, S., and McNaughton, R. (2012). Internationalization patterns of small and medium-sized enterprises. International Marketing Review, 29(5), 448-465.

Li, H., Terjesen, S., and Umans, T. (2018). Corporate governance in entrepreneurial firms: a systematic review and research agenda. Small Business Economics,

Lin, Y. H., Chen, C. J., and Lin, B. W. (2018). The dual-edged role of returnee board members in new venture performance. Journal of Business Research, 90, 347-358.

Puthusserry, P., Khan, Z., Nair, S. R., and King, T. (2021). Mitigating psychic distance and enhancing internationalization of Fintech SMEs from emerging markets: The role of board of directors. British Journal of Management, doi:10.1111/1467-8551.12502.

Romanello, R., and Chiarvesio, M. (2019). Early internationalizing firms: 2004-2018. Journal of International Entrepreneurship. DOI:

Strange, R., Filatotchev, I., Buck, T., and Wright, M. (2009). Corporate governance and international business. Management International Review, 49(4), 395-407.

Zahra, S. A. (2014). Public and corporate governance and young global entrepreneurial firms. Corporate Governance: An International Review, 22(2), 77-83.

Zattoni, A., and van Ees, H. (2012). How to contribute to the development of a global theory of corporate governance? Reflections from submitted and published articles on CGIR. Corporate Governance: An International Review, 20(1), 106-118.