MM303-Strategy and International Business

Module Provider: International Business and Strategy
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2016/7

Module Convenor: Dr Quyen Nguyen


Summary module description:
This module provides an introduction to the variety of strategic issues confronting managers of multinational enterprises (MNEs), both within the firm and in the global marketplace.

This module is delivered at University of Reading and University of Reading Malaysia.

Strategy and International Business helps students understand the classic components of a strategy and international business course. It is concerned with the factors that influence the development and the competitive positioning of multinational enterprises (MNEs). This requires an understanding of both the external international business environment and the internal nature of the firm, its strategy, structure and financial management. A firm’s strategy provides the context within which managers decide what to do, and what not to do, with respect to resource allocation, market selection and organizational development.
In this module we shall introduce you to:
• the core concepts and models underlying contemporary strategy and international business
• their theoretical and empirical foundations;
• their limitations, and the arguments surrounding them;
• their practical application to real issues facing real world companies.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module you should be able to:
• describe the frameworks and models used in international strategy analysis;
• explain the academic reasoning underlying them;
• engage effectively in discussions concerning their relevance and appropriateness, both in general academic terms and in the context of particular firms, situations and environments;
• analyse the strategic issues facing a particular company in a logical and disciplined way.

Additional outcomes:
Students will learn to work independently under pressure of time and make strategic decisions on the organization of their work. They will also develop generic skills for future employment and professional development.

Outline content:

Global context:
Regional and global strategies
FSA/CSA framework and applications (FSAs: Firm-specific advantages; CSAs: Country-specific advantages)
Strategy framework and strategic planning process
International trade and country diamonds
Integration/responsiveness framework and strategy
International culture
Multinational strategy
Organizational strategy
International financial management in the MNE
Corporate ethics and corporate social responsibility

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
Detailed guidance on the main topics of the syllabus and key references are provided in 10x2 hour sessions of lectures, questions and discussions. Students are required to do a significant amount of reading of journal articles, chapters of books, statistical sources and websites of national and international organizations.

There are four tutorials. These last one hour and run every two weeks. Tutorials are compulsory to attend. The purpose of the tutorial session is to help students understand the key concepts and some of the key theoretical frameworks by application to real world companies with the case study method.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20
Tutorials 2 2
Project Supervision 10
Guided independent study 166
Total hours by term 198.00 2.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 100

Other information on summative assessment:

Formative assessment methods:
Students will be organized into tutorial teams, which will be between 5 to 6 students.
The team assignment will be a collective piece of work, of 3,000 words for six questions, worth 40% of the total assessment weight. The paper should be submitted by a specific date.
The individual assignment will be an individual piece of work, of 1,500 words for five questions, worth 60% of the total assessment weight. The paper should be submitted by a specific date.

Relative percentage of coursework
Coursework has a 100% weight in the overall assessment of the module.

Penalties for late submission:

The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.
  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:

    Requirements for a pass:
    A weighted average of at least 40%

    Reassessment arrangements:
    By individual assignment only. The mark is capped at 50.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 21 December 2016

    Things to do now