Research Philosophy: Constructivism (subjectivism)
Research design: In order to answer the research question, we first examine how different theoretical streams contribute to understanding the possible effects that risk can have on the business strategies of the small companies, and particularly here we are interested in their internationalization process, furthermore, we are interested to know how already existing internationalization strategies explain this process in the context of the Danish start-ups. We give an overview over the existing literature strains and develop the theoretical propositions, which are then tested empirically on the collected data.
We opted for using an adaptive rather than closed research design. (Yin, 2014).
Qualitative research design is chosen.
Case study method is used to answer the research question. The unit of analysis is internationalization process of Danish start-ups, and the focus of analysis is to evaluate the risk impact on this process, on the one hand, and see how the internationalization theories explain it, on the other hand.
Research limitations: Limited access to information
Subjectivity of respondents and authors
Relatively short period of time to analyze a rather lengthy process of internationalization.
Research Purpose: Explorative
Research Approach: Deductive (vs. inductive)
Case study as a method
Data Collection: Primary data (interviews)
Secondary data: internet sources available to gather data about the case companies, linkedin, personal contacts
Operationalization: (interview questionnaire design + data analyzing method)
Structured interviews as a data collecting method.
In data processing the thematic analysis is followed which is a qualitative form of analysis described by Yin (2014). First of all, based on the theoretical overview, we singled out the theme clusters, which guide the research and data collection. Based on the main theme clusters the interview questions were composed. The interview questions are divided into 4 categories. The categories are based on the theoretical themes that were singled out according to the theoretical review.
After the interviews were performed, they were transcribed. We use transcription as a way to analyse our data. According to Gibson and Brown (2009), transcription is a way of analytically working through some problem. Methodical transcribing leads to insights that in turn shape how we choose to represent an interview narrative in our text. “Transcription enables researchers to focus on data, and to draw out particularly relevant features of it” (p. 111). After the transcription of the interviews, the analysis was performed in order to answer the two RQs.
Quality of research
The methodology section of this research serves the purpose of outlining how the study was conducted and supporting the rationale for the choice of research design, data collection, data collection tools and research method. This section describes measures undertaken under each step to ensure the quality and validity of information developed at the end of the study.
To understand the decision made within the research methodology, it is critical to explore the underlying philosophy in an organizational study of the risks of internalization. The constructive theory is a field of social epistemology that explores the modern developments of philosophy. The use of language defines the vast and the limits of one’s world. Constructive philosophy investigates the wisdom and reality between theory and practice. In the organizational environment and other fields of study, knowledge practice is viewed as the application of either or both of implicit and explicit theories (Hassard & Pym, 2012, p. 546). The role of justifying application of a theory is based on other theoretical explanation, a regression relationship that’s is infinite. To avoid such a circular and never-ending relationships, a differential approach is normally used in constructive philosophy. Theoretical knowledge claims are thus subjected to empirical taste, to falsify their application in the society or an organization in this particular context. Consequently, an alternative theory is developed to serve the initial purpose of justifying application of knowledge or theories. In this study, application of internationalization theories is analyzed among Danish organizations to determine their application. Constructive philosophy outlines three forms of relationship between theory and practice.
The first relationship is described as pre-theoretical practice. This form of practice entails people unconsciously applying theories. When faced with technical problems or opportunities, such individual develops a know-how on how to deal with the situation. However, such people cannot theoretically explain why a certain approach or rule of thumb works. Such cannot be equated to knowledge, but a mere know-how. On the other hand, is theoretical practice. Within this form, individuals can justify application of a given theory by examining its consequences. Theoretical practice is attained when an individual seeks to improve on actions or decisions, hence seeking knowledge on the subconscious know-how practices before (Information Resources Management Association, 2015, p. 653). The transition from pre-theoretical to theoretical practices is characterized with the quest to improve the validity of beliefs. The last form of the theory according to the constructivist theory is theory-supported practice. The latter described stage is achieved when evidently knowledge developed through theoretical practice solves a particular problem. Approaching the application of internationalization theories…