UCL School of Management

Module Fact Sheet

MSIN0055: International Strategy

Taught by
None; Some prior knowledge of strategic management will be useful but not essential.
2nd, 3rd, 4th year undergraduates from all departments
Term 2
Delivery method
2-hour lecture 
(x 10 weeks) and 1-hour seminar (x 10 weeks)
50% Final unseen 2-hour examination; 35% Individual Assignments; 15% Class Participation
Previous Module Code

Course overview

The module consists of a mix of lectures and seminars analyzing key issues in international entry/expansion and the challenges faced by companies operating across national borders. Special attention is paid to how firms standardize or adapt their strategies to cope with differences across markets as well as the development and implementation of international expansion strategies in dynamic environments.

The course will provide students with frameworks and tools to effectively handle these key issues in the context of established multinational corporations. At the same time, it will also provide an integrated strategy framework for young start-ups and would-be entrepreneurs facing issues of international expansion and growth.

The focus of lectures is on theory while the seminars apply theory to real-life situations faced by companies. Each seminar focuses on the analysis of a particular business case.

Seminars involve some preparation each week including readings from the course text book and a Study Pack. Each student is assigned a set of questions to answer in relation to the seminar readings; this makes class discussion more substantial and enables students to obtain marks for class participation.

Learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of the module, a student will be able to:

  • Have an understanding of the globalization debate and appreciate the implications of regional and global economic integration

  • Appreciate country differences and their effect on trade flows and on the management of business operations across borders

  • Develop an awareness of the impact of external environmental forces and internal conditions on business strategy in global contexts

  • Understand fundamental concepts in international strategy, such as the roles of pressures for cost reduction and pressures for localization

  • Evaluate a firm’s competitiveness based on the characteristics of local, regional and global competitors

  • Understand the economic, cultural and ethical issues relating to international entry/expansion

  • Apply concepts and theories relevant to the problems of managing organizational growth through overseas operations

  • Develop habits of orderly, analytical thinking and skill in reporting conclusions effectively in both written and oral form

Topics covered

  • The globalization debate

  • Strategic management in global markets

  • National, transnational and global governance

  • International entry/expansion

  • Managing pressures for standardization and localization

  • Vertical integration and firm boundaries

  • Product development and product life cycle across countries

  • Intellectual property rights in global markets

  • Foreign direct investment

  • Managing innovation across borders

Assessment summary

50% Final unseen 2-hour examination; 35% Individual Assignments; 15% Class Participation  

Current students should refer to Moodle for specific details of the current year’s assessment.

Essential reading

Hill, Charles W. L. International Business, Global Edition, 9th Edition, McGraw-Hill Education (UK) Ltd., 2012; ISBN 9780077147365.


Hill, Charles W. L. International Business, Global Edition, 10th Edition, McGraw-Hill Education (UK) Ltd., 2014; ISBN 9780077163587.

Journal articles will also form part of the essential reading

Past versions of this module

MSIN7011 17/18

MSIN7011 16/17

Last updated Tuesday, 14 August 2018