Unleashing the dynamics of product-market ambidexterity in the pursuit of international opportunities: Insights from emerging market firms

Lianxi ZHOU, Shou Ren XU, Hui XU*, Bradley R. BARNES

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Extending the current debate surrounding ambidexterity, this study examines how emerging market firms pursue international opportunities by leveraging the dynamics of strategic ambidexterity in product and market domains. The investigation draws on longitudinal and multiple sources of data from four Chinese multinational firms. Two follow traditional or incremental internationalization pathways, whilst the other two pursue rapid or accelerated internationalization. The study offers a more dynamic perspective to help understand the evolving nature of ambidexterity with respect to the routes of strategic product and market development options. In particularly, the findings reveal that incremental internationalization is characterized by structural ambidexterity combining product exploitation with market exploration at the initial stages, whereas accelerated internationalization is best explained by market exploration and exploitation (or market ambidexterity) when first entering foreign markets. Moreover, firms were found to maintain strategic priorities through structural and punctuated ambidexterity across product and market domains at later stages of internationalization. This study contributes to the dynamic perspective of strategic ambidexterity for seizing international opportunities among emerging market firms.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101614
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Business Review
Volume29
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Elsevier Ltd

Keywords

  • Ambidexterity
  • Dynamic capability
  • Emerging market firms
  • International entrepreneurship
  • Internationalization
  • Product-market domain

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