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2018/2019  KAN-CCBDO1001U  Business Strategy in Developing Countries and Emerging Markets

English Title
Business Strategy in Developing Countries and Emerging Markets

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Autumn
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for BSc and MSc in Business, Language and Culture, MSc
Course coordinator
  • Content
    Søren Jeppesen - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
Main academic disciplines
  • Strategy
  • Cultural studies
Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face teaching
Last updated on 13-06-2018

Relevant links

Learning objectives
  • Understand and describe the particular challenges and opportunities that relate to business strategy and management seen from the perspective of the local firm in emerging markets and developing countries, inter alia in relation to the presented theoretical and strategic approaches.
  • Compare and critically discuss theories and approaches that address the particular challenges and opportunities of business strategy and management for local firms in developing countries and emerging markets.
  • Apply these theories and approaches to concrete cases of local firm business strategy and management in developing countries and emerging markets and assess their respective relevance and applicability.
  • Describe and discuss the relevance of the presented methods (undertaking a literature review and a Critical Realist case study approach) to the investigation of the above mentioned issues (strategies and cases).
Course prerequisites
Knowledge of International Business theory literature is an advantage, but not a pre-condition. This course is an approved CEMS elective.
Business Strategy in Developing Countries and Emerging Markets:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Written sit-in exam on CBS' computers
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration 4 hours
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) Internal examiner and second internal examiner
Exam period Autumn
Aids Limited aids, see the list below:
The student is allowed to bring
  • USB key for uploading of notes, books and compendiums in a non-executable format (no applications, application fragments, IT tools etc.)
  • Books (including translation dictionaries), compendiums and notes in paper format
The student will have access to
  • Access to CBSLearn
  • Access to the personal drive (S-drive) on CBS´ network
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
If the number of registered candidates for the make-up examination/re-take examination warrants that it may most appropriately be held as an oral examination, the programme office will inform the students that the make-up examination/re-take examination will be held as an oral examination instead.
Description of the exam procedure

Kindly note that a good, concise exam paper is of between 4 and 6 standard pages in order to meet the learning objectives.


Students will receive a first round of Academic Writing feedback after the exam is over and grades have been awarded on their assignment. The Academic Writing is not graded in the exam.


The Academic Writing feedback will be given electronically to students on an individual basis. This is followed by feedback sessions between the student groups and the responsible lecturer (Andrew Crabtree). 

Course content and structure

Developing country and emerging market firms (DC&EMFs) often emerge from different historical paths, have different resources and capabilities and hence different strategic orientations compared to firms from developed countries.  Differences in business environments, in combination with on-going changes (in terms of speed and content), alter strategy formulation and implementation compared to developed countries. Strategy formulation and management in developing countries and emerging markets take place in a market context and regulatory environment that is significantly different from that of developed countries. The business management literature has only recently started focusing specifically on the particular strategies that local firms undertake as well as the interface between those strategies and developing countries/emerging markets. The course “Business strategy in developing countries and emerging markets” is specifically designed to introduce students to this literature. In addition to the theoretically oriented literature, the course will also include particular focus on a) making a literature review, and b) a Critical Realist case study approach. These elements are tied to the methods components of the BaDS program and will be taught with an emphasis on enhancing the student’s academic skills.


The course will consist of four modules:

Module I (Introduction) will provide a general introduction to the business and development studies literature and to the key issues of methodology. Concerning the first of these, the Introduction will take up the gap in the literature concerning the lacking perspectives from DC&EMFs as well as take account of the particular conditions of doing business in developing countries and emerging markets. Second, the Introduction will discuss the fact that the development literature has devoted too little attention to the role of local firm strategies and management in economic and social development. The introduction to key elements of methdology serves as an introduction to these issues at the BADS program in general.


Module II introduces theories of business strategy and management in developing countries and emerging markets. The module will present and position key perspectives on business strategies vis-à-vis more conventional theories of business management (e.g. the resource based perspective, transaction cost economics, network theory, principal agency theory, and institutional theory). Furthermore, it will discuss the applicability of the different theoretical frameworks to the DC&EM contexts. The main issues addressed concern the scale of firms (SMEs versus large firms and MNCs), degree of internationalisation and governance (in Global Value Chains). How to do a literature review will be introduced as the first part of the methodology input on the course.


Module III presents and examines a number of different cases from a variety of settings (Africa, Asia and Latin-America), illustrating a number of possible strategies of developing country firms. The module starts with two theme days on respectively (i) internationalisation of DC&EMFs; and (ii) domestic/local market strategies of SMEs. Secondly, the module includes lectures on a) the mobile telecommunication industry in a least developed context (Afghanistan), and b) Human Resource Management strategies among DC&EMFs. The Methods component will emphasise the Critical Realist Approach to case studies.


Module IV concludes the course summing up the content, evaluating the course and preparing for the exam including all aspects of the course (business strategies in developing countries and emerging markets, and methods).


Description of the teaching methods
The course will consist of 2-4 hour sessions over 6 weeks. These sessions will be a combination of lectures, cases, group work and student presentations. Student presentations will be based on specific questions related to the lectures’ theme and last max. 10-15 minutes. Class discussions and case teaching are integral parts of the course and all students should prepare and be ready to discuss the issues, questions and cases listed for each lecture.
Feedback during the teaching period
The course includes ‘teacher-to-student’ and ‘student-to-student’ feedback.Student feedback will occur regularly throughout the course, e.g. via Theme Days cases, in-class discussions, and office hours. Students are encouraged to make use of those to enhance their learning experience, of course in addition to regular participation and two-way communication in lectures. Students have the possibilities to receive feedback on presentations in class, if wished and to discuss content issues during the office hours of the responsible lecturers. Students are encouraged to use peer-to-peer feedback as a part of the learning process, e.g. in smaller study groups.
Student workload
Preparation for lectures, including Theme Days 96 hours
Teaching 32 hours
Exam 4 hours
Preparation for exam 60 hours
Total 192 hours
Expected literature

To be announced on Learn


Last updated on 13-06-2018