The effect of institutional isomorphic pressure on the internationalization of firms in an emerging economy : evidence from China

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)506-525
Journal / PublicationAsia Pacific Business Review
Issue number4
Online published28 Jun 2013
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2013


This study uses institutional theory to explore the driving force for internationalization of firms in emerging economies. It posits that the internationalization practices of firms are driven not only by efficiency consideration, but also by the desire to conform to institutional isomorphic pressures exerted by the social environment. The impact of three types of institutional isomorphic pressures - coercive pressure, mimetic pressure and normative pressure - on the intensity of internationalization is investigated. Analysis using survey data collected from 174 Chinese firms shows that all three institutional pressures have positive and significant effects on the intensity of internationalization. We also examine the interaction between institutional pressure and firm capability. Results suggest that firm capabilities enhance the effect of coercive pressure on internationalization, and weaken the effect of normative pressure on internationalization. © 2013 Taylor & Francis.

Research Area(s)

  • China, emerging economy, globalization, institutional isomorphic pressure, internationalization, multinational