Framework for Explaining the Formation of Knowledge Intensive Entrepreneurial Born Global Firm: Entrepreneurial, Strategic and Network Based Constituents

Vytaute Dlugoborskyte, Monika Petraite


The nature of the knowledge based entrepreneurship relates to its essential reliance on research and development, deployment and maximization of research and development returns via technology development, and its commercialization via venturing. The paper aims to provide the empirically grounded framework for the analysis of the key determinants leading to the formation of R&D intensive entrepreneurial born global firm with a special focus on entrepreneurial firm and network theories. The unit of analysis chosen is the firm, while the focus is set on the firm behavior and strategic choices rather the business conditions per se. The paper aims to propose the definition of a born global firm as a specific form of entrepreneurial firm that forms while combining entrepreneurial, strategy and network constituents in a specific globally oriented constitution. Method of analysis applied is a multiple case study that was applied in order to build evidence on the interplay of strategy, networks and entrepreneurial constituents in the formation of knowledge intensive entrepreneurial born global firm. The small catching up country perspective adds on dynamics of the constituents as the framework and competitive conditions rapidly change in an uncertain direction.


Born Global Firm; Network; Strategy; Knowledge Intensive Entrepreneurship

Full Text:



Bailetti, Tony. 2012. “The ‘born global’ disruption.” Francis Moran & Associates, May 28.

Cannone, Giusy, Gaia Costantino, Alessia Pisoni, and Alberto Onetti. 2012. “Drivers of international development for born global companies founded by Italian entrepreneurs.” Working Papers Universita’ dell’Insubria, Facolta’ di Economia. Varese: Universita’ degli Studi dell’Insubria.

Cavusgil, S. Tamer, and Gary Knight. 2009. Born Global Firms: A New International Enterprise. NY: Business Expert Press.

Crick, Dave. 2009. “The internationalisation of born global and international new venture SMEs.” International Marketing Review 4 (26): 453 – 476.

Dib, Luis Antonio, Angela Da Rocha, and Jorge Ferreira Da Silva. 2010. “The internationalization process of Brazilian software firms and the born global phenomenon: Examining firm, network, and entrepreneur variables.” Journal of International Entrepreneurship 8: 233-253.

Dlugoborskyte, Vytaute, and Monika Petraite. 2013. “Systemic Factors for the Formation of Born Global R&D Intensive Firm.” Social Sciences 2 (80): 7-16.

Dlugoborskyte, Vytaute, Monika Petraite and Stephan Buse. 2015. “Linking Entrepreneurial, Strategic and Network Variables in Explaining the Emergence of Born Global R&D Intensive Firm.” Social Sciences 1 (87): 7-18.

Erden, Zeynep, Georg von Krogh, Cecilia Nytorp, and Marcus Hultberg. 2009. “Strategic groups in the biopharmaceutical industry: Implications for performance.” Drug Discovery Today 14 (15-16): 726-730.

Eurofound (2012). Born global: The potential of job creation in new international businesses. Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union.

Filatotchev, Igor, and Jenifer Piesse. 2009. “R&D, export orientation and growth of newly listed firms: European evidence.” Journal of International Business Studies 40: 1260-1276.

Fukugawa, Nobuya. 2006. “Determining factors in innovation of small firm networks: A case of cross industry groups in japan.” Small Business Economics 2-3 (27): 181-193.

Gabrielsson, Mika, and V. H. Manek Kirpalani. 2012. Handbook of research on born globals. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Gabrielsson, Mika, V. H. Manek Kirpalani, Pavlos Dimitratos, Carl Arthur Solberg, and Antonella Zucchella. 2008. “Born globals: Propositions to help advance the theory.” International Business Review 4 (17): 385−401.

Gabrielsson, Mika, and Tommi Pelkonen. 2008. “Born internationals: Market expansion and business operation mode strategies in the digital media field.” Journal of International Entrepreneurship 2 (6): 49-71.

Gassler, Helmut, and Brigitte Nones. 2008. “Internationalisation of R&D and embeddedness: The case of Austria.” Journal of Technology Transfer 4 (33): 407-421.

González Menorca, Leonor, Rubén Fernández-Ortiz and Mónica Clavel San Emeterio. 2012. “Global Start-up profile from resource and capability approach: application to the spanish wine-producing sector.” International Journal of Management & Marketing Research 1 (5): 67-78.

Hagedoorn, John, Nadine Roijakkers, and Hans Kranenburg. 2006. “Inter-firm R&D networks: The importance of strategic network capabilities for hightech partnership formation.” British Journal of Management 1 (17): 39-53.

Halldin, Torbjörn. 2012. “Born global firms – do they perform differently?” Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies (CESIS) Electronic Working Paper Series 269: 2-26.

Johansson, Mattias. 2005. “Networking the knowledge-based entrepreneurial firm.” Knowledge-Based Entrepreneurship: Innovation, Networks and Systems (KEINS). Milan: CESPRI.

Jones, Marian V., Nicole Coviello, and Yee Kwan Tang. 2011. “International entrepreneurship research (1989–2009): a domain ontology and thematic analysis.” Journal of Business Venturing 6 (26): 632–659.

Kanellos, Nikos Stelios. 2013. “Exploring the characteristics of Knowledge-Based Entrepreneurship in Greek high-technology sectors.” Paper presented in DRUID Academy Conference 2013 for doctoral students in Economics and Management of Innovation, Technology and Organizations, Aalborg, Denmark, January 16-18.

Kriaucioniene, Monika, and Arminas Ragauskas. 2008. “Transition via R&D: emerging forms and strategies of corporate R&D in the catch up countries (Lithuanian case).” Paper presented in the IV Globelics Conference, Mexico City, Mexico, September 22-24.

Kudina, Alina, George S. Yip, and Harry G. Barkema. 2008. “Born-Global.” Business Strategy Review 4 (19): 39–44.

Lau, Chung-Ming, Daphne W. Yiu, Ping-Kwong Yeung, and Yuan Lu. 2008. "Strategic orientation of high-technology firms in a transitional economy." Journal of Business Research 61 (7): 765-777.

Lee, Thomas W. 1999. Using Qualitative Methods in Organizational Research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Love, James H., and Stephen Roper. 2001. “Outsourcing in the innovation process: locational and strategic determinants.” Papers in Regional Science 3 (80): 317-336.

Malerba, Franco, Yannis Caloghirou, Maureen McKelvey, and Slavo Radoševic (Eds.). (2015). Dynamics of Knowledge Intensive Entrepreneurship: Business Strategy and Public Policy, 38. NY: Routledge.

Mets, Tonis, and Aleksei Kelli. 2011. “Are Hi-Tech ‘Born-Global-s’ Really Born Global?” Organizacijų vadyba: sisteminiai tyrimai 59: 81-94.

Mettler, Ann, and Anthony D. Williams. 2011. “The rise of the micro-multinational: How freelancers and technology-savvy start-ups are driving growth, jobs and innovation.” Lisbon Council Policy Brief 3 (5): 1-28.

Olejnik, Edith, and Bernhard Swoboda. 2012. “SMEs’ internationalisation patterns: descriptives, dynamics and determinants.” International Marketing Review 5 (29): 466 – 495.

Renda, A. (2011). “Next generation innovation policy: The future of EU innovation policy to support market growth.” Ernst & Young/ CEPS. October 26, 2011. Accessed January 4, 2013.

Rialp, Alex, Josep Rialp, and Gary A. Knight. 2005. “The phenomenon of early internationalizing firms: what do we know after a decade (1993-2003) of scientific inquiry?” International Business Review 2 (14): 147-166.

Schulz, Anja, Thomas Borghoff, and Sascha Kraus. 2009. “International entrepreneurship: towards a theory of SME internationalization.” International Journal of Business and Economics 1 (9): 1-12.

Sullivan Mort, Gillian, Jay Weerawardena, and Peter Liesch. 2012. “Advancing entrepreneurial marketing: Evidence from born global firms.” European Journal of Marketing 3 (46): 542 – 561.

Tanev, Stoyan. 2012. “Global from the Start: The Characteristics of Born-Global Firms in the Technology Sector.” Technology Innovation Management Review 3: 5-8.

Taylor, Murray, and Robert Jack. 2012. “Understanding the pace, scale and pattern of firm internationalization: An extension of the ‘born global’ concept.” International Small Business Journal 31 (6): 701-721.

Tidd, Joe. 2001. “Innovation management in context: Environment, organization and performance.” International Journal of Management Reviews 3 (3): 169-183.

Van Beers, Cees, Elina Berghäll, and Tom Poot. 2008. “R&D internationalization, R&D collaboration and public knowledge institutions in small economies: Evidence from Finland and the Netherlands.” Research Policy 2 (37): 294- 308.

Van de Vrande, Vareska, Charmianne Lemmens, and Wim Vanhaverbeke. 2006. “Choosing governance modes for external technology sourcing.” R&D Management 3 (36): 347-363.

Varma, Sumati. 2010. “The global starts up from Indian IT – a case study.” Journal of Advanced Research in Management 1 (1): 45-55.

Vega-Jurado, Jaider, Antonio Gutiérrez-Gracia, and Ignacio Fernández-de-Lucio. 2009. “Does external knowledge sourcing matter for innovation? Evidence from the Spanish manufacturing industry.” Industrial and Corporate Change 4 (18): 637-670.

Weerawardena, Jay, Gillian Sullivan Mort, Peter W. Liesch, and Gary Knight. 2007. “Conceptualizing accelerated internationalization in the born global firm: a dynamic capabilities perspective.” Journal of World Business 3 (42): 294-306.

Williams, Christopher, and Soo Hee Lee. 2009. “Resource allocations, knowledge network characteristics and entrepreneurial orientation of multinational corporations.” Research Policy 8 (38): 1376-1387.

Witt, Ulrich, and Christian Zellner. 2005. Knowledge-based entrepreneurship: The organizational side of technology commercialization. Lausanne: CEMI.

World Economic Forum. 2015. “The Global Competitiveness Report 2015-2016.” Accessed January 4, 2016.

Zhang, Jing, Charles Baden-Fuller, and Vincent Mangematin. 2007. “Technological knowledge base, R&D organization structure and alliance formation: Evidence from the biopharmaceutical industry.” Research Policy 4 (36): 515-528.



  • There are currently no refbacks.


Indexed in:

DOAJ, ERIH PLUS, Dialnet, Latindex, Google Scholars, RACO

RCUB Avís Legal RCUB Universitat de Barcelona