Born globals and international business: Evolution of a field of research

Ivo Zander*, Patricia McDougall-Covin, Elizabeth L Rose

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

113 Citations (Scopus)


Knight and Cavusgil's award-winning article has played an important role in the development of the growing body of research on companies that internationalize early and rapidly. These "born global" firms represent important contributors to many economies, often as key players in ecosystems that support large multinational enterprises. Despite their growing importance, our understanding of how and why these firms develop and implement their internationalization strategies, and what makes them successful, remains incomplete. Addressing such questions has contributed substantially to the development of the research domain of international entrepreneurship (IE), which focuses on entrepreneurial aspects of doing business across borders, in the context of both small and large firms. While IE is much broader than born globals, these firms are central to the IE domain and the impact of the Knight and Cavusgil paper has helped to develop a stronger awareness of the important linkages and intersections between IE and the wider international business research community. We reflect on the important contribution of this paper, and suggest some directions for the future development of research into firms that choose to operate internationally practically from the start of their operations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-35
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of International Business Studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jan 2015
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • born globals
  • Decade Award
  • entrepreneurship
  • international new venture

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