Special issue


Guest Editors:

Veland Ramadani

Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship and Management at South-East European University, Macedonia

Dianne H.B. Welsh

Hayes Distinguished Professor of Entrepreneurship at University of North Carolina-Greensboro, United States

The aim of this special issue is to broaden discussions on family firms’ internationalization strategies. These firms represent the backbone of the countries’ economies and their stability is critical to global economic growth. (Hacker & Dowling, 2012; Hoy & Sharma, 2010; Ramadani & Hoy, 2015; Welsh et al. 2013). The prevalence of family firms documents both the economic and social impact they have (Brigham, 2013; Ramadani et al., 2017). As a way to keep their dominance and relevance in economy and society, is the internationalization of their activities (Ratten, Dana and Ramadani, 2017).

Internationalization is related with the process in which firms operate in international markets (Dana 2004; Rammal, 2005; Rexhepi et al. 2017). Family firms’ owners are continuously looking for models and strategies to successfully internationalize their businesses. Many studies had shown that usually entrepreneurs need different approaches and strategies in reaching this markets in comparison with those used in domestic markets (Dana et al., 2004; Ratten et al. 2007; Ratten et al. 2017). Internationally, family firms operate in environments with very different rules and practices from those of domestic markets. Family business entrepreneurs need to analyze in details every difference that they can face with. They need to consider details, such are those related to general strategy, human resources strategy, consumers’ behavior, local rules and regulation, policies, location, brand recognition by locals and internationally, etc. The success will depend from the entry models and entry strategies that they select (Ratten and Dana, 2015; Rexhepi, 2015).

Some family firms are less interested in international markets because of their risk aversion, which means that a small number of family firms will be resistant to international opportunities because of the perceived inflexibility of the global marketplace (Sharma, Chrisman and Chua, 1997). In addition, the disparate family goals and values of some firms make it difficult to focus on internationalization efforts (Ward and Dolan, 1998). Some other family firms facilitate growth by quickly focusing on international opportunities. This can be difficult for some family firms as the international market can be a hard process that is complemented by large resource requirements needed to achieve success (Ratten et al., 2017).

Both micro- and macro-level studies are welcome for the special issue. Quantitative, qualitative and mixed approaches are also welcome, so long as they are well grounded in the literature. Please refer to the following articles:

§ Dana, L.P. & Dumez, H. (2015) “Qualitative Research Revisited: Epistemology of a Comprehensive Approach,” International Journal of Entrepreneurship & Small Business 26 (2), October 2015, pp. 154-170.

§ Dana, L.P. & Dana, T.E. (2005) “Expanding the Scope of Methodologies Used in Entrepreneurship Research,” International Journal of Entrepreneurship & Small Business 2 (1), 2005, pp. 79-88.

We encourage authors to submit emerging and groundbreaking topics to diversify and widen research in family firms.


Brigham, K.H. (2013), Social and economic impact of family business, in Sorenson, R.L., Yu, A., Brigham, K.H., and Lumpkin, G.T. (Eds.), The Landscape of Family Business, Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar.

Dana, L-P. (2004), Handbook of Research on International Entrepreneurship, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham.

Hacker, J., & Dowling, M., (2012). Succession in Family Firms: How to Improve Family Satisfaction and Family Harmony, Int. J. Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 15(1), 76-99.

Hoy, F., & Sharma, P. (2010). Entrepreneurial Family Firms. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Ramadani, V., & Hoy, F. (2015). Context and uniqueness of family businesses. In L-P Dana & V. Ramadani (Eds), Family Businesses in Transition Economies, pp.9-37, Springer, Cham.

Ramadani, V., Bexheti, A., Rexhepi, V., Ratten, V., and Ibraimi, S. (2017). Succession Issues in Albanian Family Businesses: An Exploratory Research, Journal of Balkan and Near Eastern Studies, Vol. 19, No. 3, pp. xx–yy.

Rammal, G. H. (2005). International business negotiations: The case of Pakistan. International Journal of Commerce and Management, Vol.15, No. 2, pp.129 – 140.

Ratten, V., Dana, L-P., and Ramadani, V. (2017). Internationalisation of family business groups in transition economies. International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, forthcoming.

Ratten, V., Dana, L-P., Han, M., and Welpe, I. (2007). Internationalisation of SMEs: European comparative studies, International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, Vol. 4, No.3, pp. 361 – 379

Rexhepi G. (2015), Entering new markets: strategies for internationalization of family businesses, in Dana L-P. and Ramadani, V. (Eds). Family Businesses in Transition Economies, pp. 293-305, Springer, Cham.

Rexhepi, G., Ramadani, V., Rahdari, A., and Anggadwita, G. (2017). Models and strategies of family businesses internationalization: A conceptual framework and future research directions. Review of International Business and Strategy, forthcoming.

Welsh, D.H.B., Memili, E., Rosplock, K., Roure, J., Seguardo, J. L. (2013). Perceptions of entrepreneurship across generations in family businesses and family offices: A stewardship theory perspective. Journal of Family Business Strategy, 4(3), 213-226.

Topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

§ Internationalization and globalization of family firms

§ Succession planning and internationalization of family firms

§ International entrepreneurship specifics of family firms

§ Impact of internationalization on family dynamics

§ Strategic planning and organizational changes towards internationalization in family firms

Important Dates

Submission of manuscripts: September 01, 2017

Notification to authors: October 01, 2017

Final versions due: November 01, 2017

Information for Authors

Submitted papers should not have been previously published nor be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere.

We recommend that authors review the About the Journal page for the journal’s section policies, as well as the Author Guidelines. Authors should submit their manuscripts to:

Veland Ramadani


Dianne H.B. Welsh