BST 2412 International Business

BST 2412 International Business

Course code: 
BST 2413
Communication and Culture
Course coordinator: 
Eli Moen
David Guttormsen
Course name in Norwegian: 
International Business
Product category: 
Bachelor Specialisations HSØA
2018 Autumn
Active status: 
Level of study: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

This course together with BTH 2412 Bachelor thesis - International Business - constitutes the specialization in International Business, which will be stated on BI's Diploma.

With the advancement of the globalized economy firms and employees are faced with increased complexity. To succeed in international business, managers have to consider and make decisions about external as well as internal factors. The course will in a systemic way address important factors at both levels. External factors will include international organizations such as the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund and the European Union as well as other multilateral organizations. To succeed in business knowledge of how these organizations regulate international business is essential.

At the national level the course will introduce students to the importance of institutions - both formal (legal systems, political systems, socio-economic systems) and informal (culture, religion, languages). In order to avoid failure when operating in other national contexts, managers have to be aware of all these different factors.

International organizations and institutions will form the backdrop for firm level analyses. At the firm level the course will introduce students to different types of firm strategies for internationalizing (export, investing abroad); to foreign entry strategies; to building global strategies (greenfield, mergers and acquisitions); to competitive dynamics, to emerging markets (for example the BRICS countries); to new forms of production systems (decentralized, networked, supply chains); as well as the importance of innovation and the emergence of green economy. The course will also provide students with knowledge of multinational companies’ organizational structure, and how to manage people across cultures (cross-cultural HR-strategies).

The course literature is research based and uses practical cases for developing students’ skills to analyze and make a balanced evaluation of topical issues.

Learning outcomes - Knowledge

The overall objective of this specialization is to provide students with knowledge of the international business environment and how to manage international and global companies, and culturally diverse employees.

After having completed the course, students should have acquired knowledge of central factors in international business - both on the macro and micro level. In particular, they should have knowledge of national differences in the international business environment, firms’ strategies for serving foreign markets, and for engaging in global competition as well as the implication of institutions, culture and external environments on HRM and managing international careers, cross-border operations and negotiations.

Learning outcomes - Skills

The students will be able to manage a diverse multicultural workforce as well as negotiating, leading and communicating across cultural, ethnic and linguistic boundaries.

Learning Outcome - Reflection

The students should be able to critically reflect on the effects of globalization (negative as well as positive) and to see how a changing world impacts business at the macro and micro level. They should be able to reflect on the significance of institutions and understand how culture impact on people's expectations and perceptions of management.

Course content

This course consists of  six 2-day sessions, which will cover: key contemporary and challenging IB themes:

  • Globalising business
  • Formal institutions – economic, political & legal systems
  • Informal institutions
  • Firm resources: competitiveness and growth & Competitive dynamics
  • Business ethics & Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Investing abroad directly & Internationalisation process
  • Foreign entry strategies & Structuring and organising MNEs
  • Global Integration and Multilateral organisations
  • Intercultural issues in international business
  • International Human Resource Management & Global Talent Management
  • Revision – Overview of Globalising Business
Learning process and requirements to students

The course consists of 78 teaching hours. The learning process emphasize a mix of lectures, student presentations, analysis of cases of business decisions and management challenges, as well as written assignments. Active participation and involvement in class is expected and encouraged. Information regarding student evaluation will be provided in class. This information may be relevant to requirements for term papers or other hand-ins, and/or where class participation can be one of several elements of the overall evaluation.

Software tools
No specified computer-based tools are required.
Additional information



The course requires 2 years university college education in economics, administration and marketing or the equivalent.

Required prerequisite knowledge

As a minimum the basic course in statistics MET 3431 Statistics or MET 2920 Statistics.

Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Written submission
Group/Individual (1 - 2)
3 Week(s)
One assignment in groups of 1 - 2 students (abouth three weeks). The assignment require participation in class which will involve a learning process with peer review from other students and a presentation with feedback.
Exam code: 
BST 24124
Grading scale: 
Examination every semester
Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Written submission
Group/Individual (1 - 2)
72 Hour(s)
Exam code: 
Grading scale: 
Examination every semester
Exam organisation: 
Ordinary examination
All exams must be passed to get a grade in this course.
Total weight: 
Student workload
78 Hour(s)
Prepare for teaching
130 Hour(s)
Group work / Assignments
92 Hour(s)
75 Hour(s)
25 Hour(s)
Sum workload: 

A course of 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours. Therefore a course of 15 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of at least 400 hours.