International Business

Course Objectives and Description

An understanding of international business is essential for students in today's interdependent global world. This course will provide students with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to understand the global economic, political, cultural and social environment within which firms operate. It will examine the strategies and structures of international business and assess the special roles of an international business's various functions. It will also prepare students to formulate and execute strategies, plans, and tactics to succeed in international business ventures.

In-class exercises, mini-projects as well as case studies will demonstrate real-world applications of international business and management concepts.
At the end of the course students should be able to:
1.         Understand the most widely used international business terms and concepts.
2.         Identify the role and impact of political, economical, social and cultural variables in international business.
3.         Analyze international business from a multi-centric perspective, avoiding ethnocentrism.
An integrated teaching model will be adopted by combining lecturing with group discussions, individual assignments, exercises, case analysis and presentations. Special attention is given to case studies in German automotive industry.
Extras (ev.): Field Trips, Guest lectures, Company Presentations, Case Studies, Movies (experimental !)

Charles, E. Hill, International Business: Competing in the Global Marketplace, 7th ed.

McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc., 2009
Additional references and supplemental readings as well as homework assignments and case studies are provided during lectures.

Grading / Assessment

Course Grading will be based on in-class case studies, team presentations (max 15 minutes presentation plus ca. 15 minutes for class discussion), homework, tests and final exam (accounting for 50% of the final grade).

     In-class case studies and attendance                       10 %    max 10 points
     Team presentations                                                   20 %    max 20 points
     Tests                                                                          10 %    max 10 points
     Homework                                                                  10 %    max 10 points
     One/hour final exam                                                   50 %    max 50 points
Class attendance is required as an essential part of learning process. Bonus points will be awarded to those who actively participate in class discussions.

Table of Contents

Part 1 Introduction and Overview: Globalization

Part 2 Country Differences in Political Economy and Culture, Ethics
Part 3 The Global Trade and Investment Environment
Part 4 Regional Economic Integration: European Union
Part 5 The Strategy and Structure of International Business
                                      Case studies: Porsche & Volkswagen
                                                           Daimler & Chrysler 
                                                           BMW & Audi
Part 6 International Business Operations



  •  In-class exercises
  •  mini-projects
  •  weekly homework
  •  case studies


8 hours per week from Monday to Thursday, 13.30-15.00 h

ECTS credit: 4,0