Welcome to the AIB RM-SIG.



“To advance the quality, diversity and understanding of research methodologies in international business, and to promote innovation in research methodologies.”

AIB 2023: Pre-Conference – 5th July


Workshop: Machine Learning for International Business Research – 10am – 1pm

Thomas Lindner (University of Innsbruck) and Laurenz Tinhof (Vienna University of Economics and Business)

In this workshop, we cover the conceptual foundations of machine learning (ML), and how ML complements the battery of empirical methodologies usually applied in IB research. After having established the conceptual basics, we will proceed to implementing simple ML methodologies in the script language R, using recent machine learning packages. In the last part of the workshop, we will introduce workshop participants to an ML architecture we developed for predicting subsidiary profits abroad, and participants will be able to edit and improve the ML architecture in a case study of using ML for IB research. We will close with Q&A about applications in current research projects and teaching.


Workshop: Surviving the review process: Behind the scenes of submitting qualitative papers to IB journals – 10am-1pm

Rebecca Piekkari (Aalto University School of Business)

In this workshop we will cover the issues involved in publishing qualitative research in IB journals. Professor Rebecca Piekkari, an Area Editor of Journal of International Business Studies (JIBS), will discuss the process with editors and author teams of papers that have recently been published in JIBS and JWB. Workshop participants will get a behind-the-scenes understanding of the key challenges that the authors faced, lessons they learned, and the key turning points and insights they obtained during the review process. Participants will also hear advice from editors about how authors can maximise the chances of their papers making it through the review process. The workshop will provide opportunities for workshop participants to pose questions of the presenters and reflect on the workshop content.


Masterclass: The combined use of Partial Least Squares Structural Equation Modeling (PLS-SEM) and Necessary Condition Analysis (NCA) – 2pm-5pm

Nicole Richter (University of Southern Denmark) and Christian Ringle (Hamburg University of Technology)

This workshop introduces and encourages the combined use of partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM) and the necessary condition analysis (NCA) that enables researchers to explore and validate hypotheses following a sufficiency logic, as well as hypotheses drawing on a necessity logic.

PLS-SEM belongs to a family of regression-based methods for estimating models with latent variables developed by the Swedish econometrician Herman Wold (1985). Since the 2000s, PLS-SEM has gained widespread popularity in a variety of disciplines among them (international) marketing and management research. The method estimates theoretically established causal-predictive relationships between latent variables (i.e. constructs measured by observed indicators). The results can empirically substantiate the determinants (X) that lead to an outcome (Y). Authors who interpret their PLS-SEM findings often use expressions such as “X increases Y” or “a higher X leads to a higher Y”. The interpretation, therewith, follows a sufficiency logic. Understanding relationships in terms of sufficiency logic is extremely relevant. Researchers, for instance, aim to understand the factors that lead to a stronger intention to use certain technology by applying different theories of technology acceptance; or they aim to understand the factors that contribute to a higher loyalty of their customers.

In contrast, the NCA is a relatively novel research methodology that has attracted much attention in the academic community in recent years. The NCA follows a necessity logic (“X is necessary for Y”) and can identify necessary conditions in data sets. A necessary condition is a critical factor for an outcome: if the necessary cause is not in place the outcome will not materialize. Hence, the necessary condition can be a bottleneck, critical factor, constraint, disqualifier, etc. The right level of a necessary condition must be put and kept in place to avoid guaranteed failure. By adding a different logic and data analysis approach, an NCA adds both rigor and relevance to theory, data analysis, and publications.

Against this background, with a combined use of PLS-SEM and NCA, we can determine the factors that produce the best possible outcome (i.e. the should-have factors; sufficiency logic) and those that are critical for an outcome (i.e. the must-have factors; necessity logic). Importantly, the should-have factors can only increase an outcome after the must-have factors have been taken care of. If necessary conditions are ignored or neglected in a field where we theoretically assume they exist, the result will be incomplete findings and recommendations. PLS-SEM is an approach to identify the determinants that can increase an outcome. NCA identifies the necessary level of a determinant that is needed to enable the outcome (Richter et al., 2020). 

In this workshop, we will, therefore, introduce sufficiency and necessity logic as well as the foundations of a combined PLS-SEM and NCA use. For a case study illustration we use the SmartPLS 4 software. We provide insights into the logic, assessment, challenges and benefits of a combined use of PLS-SEM and NCA.  


Masterclass: Ethnography 2-5pm

Fiona Moore (Royal Holloway, University of London)

Drawing on my experience of more than 25 years as an anthropologist of business and organisations, we will begin with a discussion of what makes a study “ethnographic”, and about how ethnography in business draws on, and develops, work done in more traditional settings. We will consider various theoretical and practical traditions in ethnography and their relevance to business and management. We will then engage in various practical exercises aimed at developing participants’ skills as ethnographers and at instilling an “ethnographic mentality” for use in fieldwork.



AIB SIG Webinar: Qualitative Comparative Analysis Techniques and IB Research

Hosts:  AIB Research Methods SIG (Twitter)

Date: 19 April 2023, 14:30 UTC (View Local Time)

Overview: This webinar will focus on Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA), particularly for international business (IB) research.  Facilitated by the AIB’s Research Methods Shared Interest Group (RM-SIG), this webinar will cover the essentials and applications of QCA for IB research and address questions by attendees.


Thomas Greckhamer is the William W. Rucks IV Endowed Chair and Professor of Management at Louisiana State University. He earned his PhD from the University of Florida. His research focuses on configurational and discourse-oriented approaches to strategic management, qualitative research methodology, and qualitative comparative analysis. His theoretical and empirical research has been published in leading journals such as Strategic Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Journal of Management, Organization Science, Organization Studies, and Long Range Planning. His methods-oriented work has been published in leading research methods journals such as Organizational Research Methods, Qualitative Inquiry, Qualitative Research, and Field Methods. He serves as an Associate Editor for Organizational Research Methods.


Stav Fainshmidt is an Associate Professor of International Business at Ivey Business School. His research focuses on the institutional and governance context surrounding multinational companies, and the ways in which organizations develop and deploy capabilities. His most recent research projects examine how multinational companies deal with tensions between federal, state, and local institutions, how firms expand internationally by learning from the offshoring activities of peer firms, and the ways in which firms can shape the tempo of change in their competitive environment. He serves as the Reviewing Editor of Journal of World Business, a Consulting Editor for Journal of International Business Studies, and an Associate Editor for Journal of Management Studies.


AIB SIG Webinar: Social Network Analysis in International Business Research

Hosts:  AIB Research Methods SIG (Twitter)

Date: 3 March 2023, 15:30 UTC (View Local Time)

Register Here

Event Recording Access: Current AIB members will be able to access a recording of this event in the “AIB Video Archive” section of our login portal. New webinar recordings are typically posted within five business days of the original event date.


This webinar, the latest in a series facilitated by AIB’s Research Methods Shared Interest Group (RM-SIG), will discuss the nature of Social Network Analysis for conducting quantitative data analysis and reporting. Social Network Analysis (SNA) is a suitable and flexible template for studying the complexity and dynamicity of international businesses, especially considering the multiplicity of levels and units of analysis. However, adopting such a methodology is challenging regarding data quality and time spans.

The panelists are experts in SNA, and they:

-Will introduce the SNA principles and how these can be applied to IB research,
-Discuss methodological issues related to identifying network communities
-Present different network-based measures and approaches to tackle critical issues in IB research from a network perspective.


Marianna Marra is Reader (Associate Professor) in international business and innovation at the University of Sussex Business School, UK. She is active in the research fields of international business, technology innovation management, and social network analysis. Her current research mainly relates to multinational knowledge networks and innovation. She studies this through the lens of IB studies and by using patent data and firm-level microdata. Marianna also researches comparative institutional analysis and studies how different forms of capitalism affect multinational corporations operating in different institutional contexts. Her work has been presented at international conferences such as the Academy of Management, Strategic Management Society, Academy of International Business, and Druid conference. In addition, part of her work has been published in leading journals such as the Journal of Corporate Finance, Work Employment and Society, International Business Review, International Journal of Production Economics, Annals of Operations Research, and International Journal of Production Research.

Viacheslav Iurkov is Associate Professor at Grenoble Ecole de Management (GEM) at the Department of Management and Technology. He received his Ph.D. in Strategic Management from BI Norwegian Business School (Oslo, Norway). In his research, Viacheslav investigates the impact of inter-organizational relationships on firm behavior and performance. He is particularly interested in the effect of strategic alliance networks on firms’ international expansion strategies and value creation in international and domestic strategic alliances. His research has appeared in the Journal of International Business Studies and other outlets.

Rafael A. Corredoira is an assistant professor in the Department of Management and Human Resources at the Fisher College of Business. He received his Ph.D. in Management from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. His research focuses on embedded exploration: how networks that originate from social ties, market dynamics, and institutional arrangements constrain and enable firms’ entrepreneurial search for innovative solutions. Corredoira has authored articles published in many leading journals, including Strategic Management Journal, Academy of Management Journal, Harvard Business Review, Journal of International Business Studies, and Research Policy. His research received the 2021 Panmure House Prize, the 2007 International Management Division Best Paper Award at the Academy of Management Meeting, and funding from the National Science Foundation.


Diletta Pegoraro (Ph.D. University of Birmingham) is an Assistant Professor of International Business in the Department of Management, Economics, and Industrial Engineering (DIG) at Politecnico di Milano, Italy. Her research interests include the dynamics of Global Value Chain/Global Production Network reorganization at the sub-national level, the internationalization of local ecosystems considering the latest technological advancements, and International Business research methodologies. She has been an officer at the AIM-RM-SIG since 2017


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AIB 2022:

We would like to thank everyone who participated in our workshops, masterclasses and clinics which took place as part of the 2022 AIB Annual meeting in Miami.