The Concept of International Opportunity in International Entrepreneurship: A Review and a Research Agenda

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Abstract

Recent research in the field of international entrepreneurship (IE) has emphasized the concept of international opportunity. The entrepreneurial behaviors focused on international opportunities have been found to be critical in IE. International opportunities, however, are often depicted in rather abstract and unspecified ways, and the research suffers from narrow theoretical discussion in relation to the concept of opportunity. To address these issues, the authors draw from entrepreneurship research and present alternative conceptualizations of opportunities as a basis for more in-depth study of international opportunities in IE. To further articulate a future research agenda, the authors review the state of knowledge on opportunities in the IE field by content-analyzing articles published between 1989 and 2012. All the analyzed articles incorporate the concept of opportunity into their studies. It is found that, although the IE research has investigated many relevant elements, it is rather limited in the articulation of the conceptual features of international opportunities and opportunity-focused behaviors. Building on these observations, the authors propose a definition of international opportunity and research questions and strategies to advance IE research on international opportunities.

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