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2021/2022  BA-BDMAO2003U  Globalisation, Outsourcing and Virtual Organising

English Title
Globalisation, Outsourcing and Virtual Organising

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory
Level Bachelor
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Autumn
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
BSc in Digital Management
Course coordinator
  • Luise Noring - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
Main academic disciplines
  • Globalisation and international business
  • Strategy
Teaching methods
  • Blended learning
Last updated on 06-05-2021

Relevant links

Learning objectives
  • Identify and analyze challenges companies and their employees are facing in globalization processes
  • Demonstrate an overview of how virtual platforms and designs may facilitate globalization processes and potentially overcome the challenges individuals and companies face
  • Select relevant theory to conceptualize, analyze and critically assess practices of virtual organization in a case study of an organization of own choice
  • Demonstrate understanding of the characteristics of virtual organizing and virtual teamwork
  • Demonstrate understanding of the role of social interaction and perceived cultural differences in global virtual work relations
  • Discuss and reflect upon the use of digital technologies in global organizing of a company´s internally and externally dispersed activities
Globalisation, Outsourcing and Virtual Organising:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Oral exam based on written product

In order to participate in the oral exam, the written product must be handed in before the oral exam; by the set deadline. The grade is based on an overall assessment of the written product and the individual oral performance, see also the rules about examination forms in the programme regulations.
Individual or group exam Individual oral exam based on written group product
Number of people in the group 2-4
Size of written product Max. 10 pages
Assignment type Synopsis
Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
20 min. per student, including examiners' discussion of grade, and informing plus explaining the grade
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) Internal examiner and external examiner
Exam period Winter
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
If a student participated in writing the group synopsis, but was sick at the time of the oral examination, the re-examination will be based on a resubmission of the original group synopsis.

If a student participated in writing the group essay, but did not pass the oral examination, the student can choose either to resubmit the original group synopsis or to write a new, individual synopsis of maximum 10 pages, within a specified time period.

If a whole student group did not pass the oral examination, the group can choose either to resubmit their original group synopsis, or write a new group synopsis of maximum 10 pages and submit it within a specified time period.

If a student, due to illness or other reasons, did not participate in writing the group synopsis, the student must on individual basis write a synopsis, max 10 pages, within a specified time period.
Description of the exam procedure

During and after the course, the students will - in groups of 2 to 4 - write a synopsis (max 10 pages) where they deal with virtual global organizing of production or innovation in a company and make use of the theories, models and practices presented and discussed throughout the course. 


The oral presentation must take up maximum one third of the total examination time. The following discussion with examiners will take the point of departure in the synopsis and the literature referred to in the presentation, but is likely to broaden out to other parts of the readings for the course.

Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

The course will take its point of departure in the global restructuring of industries and look at how offshoring and outsourcing of work can be managed through virtual platforms and virtual teamwork.


The scene will be set with lectures about developments at the macro-level, about the three waves of globalization and the move from global value chains to global production and innovation networks. These introductory lectures aim to give the students an understanding of how industries are developing global production and innovation networks, a development that creates a need for virtual organizing. They also draw attention to the fact that firms must learn to govern activities that are globally dispersed, either internally through strategies of offshoring and foreign direct investments or externally through outsourcing. 


The second part of the course deals with global virtual collaboration and boundary spanning at a team level. It introduces literature dealing with key issues related to global virtual work: choice of common language, choice of communication technologies and media, perceived cultural differences and conditions for trust-building. 


The third part of the course focuses on the organizational level, and deals with how production and innovation is increasingly organized in global networks.  We will look into specific firms that have developed digital platforms for their internal innovation practices or developed models for open innovation and how they deal with challenges of virtual coordination and communication. We will also look into the construction of global communities of practice and distributed and coordinated learning processes and critically assess the limits to virtual organizing. This section draws on literature on organizational learning and knowledge sharing, and brings in the perspective of globalization into this literature of economic sociology.


Techniques for different levels of oral presentation (elevator pitch, coffee pitch and board of directors pitch) as well as peer-to-peer feedback will be trained in exercises.

Description of the teaching methods
The course will be conducted as a combination of on-line and on-campus lectures and exercises. The course consists of 12 lectures and four exercise classes. The introductory and final lectures will be conducted on-campus, and the remaining lectures will be conducted as pre-recorded lectures on-line combined with on-line activities and discussion forums.

The four exercise classes will take place on-campus.

Throughout the course, students are expected to participate actively in discussions of theories, models, cases and new forms of organizing in global networks.
Feedback during the teaching period
On the basis of the lectures, students will get an opportunity to engage with - and critically assess - theories of globalization. The lecturer will provide feedback on the inputs from the students.

In the exercise classes, students will work with cases and present these cases to the rest of the class. Here too immediate feedback is given by the class and by the instructor. The last exercise class is a feedback session organized as a student conference, where the groups are encouraged to present their preliminary work on their exam synopses to the class.

After the exam, the groups will get feedback on their synopses and oral exam.
Student workload
Lectures 24 hours
Exercise classes 12 hours
Preparation and readings 110 hours
Development of student project for exam synopsis 50 hours
Exam and preparation of presentation 10 hours
Expected literature

Course literature (indicative)


Archibugi, D. & Michie, J. 1995. The globalisation of technology: a new taxonomy. Cambridge Journal of Economics, 19(1), 121-140.


Das, T. K., & Teng, B. S. 1998. Between trust and control: developing confidence in partner cooperation in alliances. Academy of Management Review, 23 (3), 491-512.


Elsbach, K.-D., Cable, D.M. and Sherman, J.W. 2010. How passive ‘face time’ affects perceptions of employees: Evidence of spontaneous trait inference. Human Relations 63 (6): 735-760.


Hinds, P.J., Neeley, T. B., Cramton, C. D. 2014. Language as a lightning rod: Power contests, emotion regulation, and subgroup dynamics in global teams. Journal of International Business Studies 45 (5): 536-561.


Kimble, C., 2011. Building effective virtual teams: How to overcome the problems of trust and identity in virtual teams. Global Business and Organizational Excellence, 30 (2): 6-15.


Levina, N., & Vaast, E., 2008.  Innovating or Doing as Told? Status Differences and Overlapping Boundaries in Offshore Collaboration. MIS Quarterly, 32 (2): 307-332.


Mahadevan, J., 2011. Engineering culture(s) across sites: implications for cross-cultural management of emic meanings.  In Primecz, H., Romani, L. and Sackmann, S. (Eds.) .  Cross-Cultural Management in Practice.Culture and Negotiated Meanings. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar: 89-100.


Maznevski, M. 2012. State of the Art: Global Teams. In Gertsen, M.C., Søderberg, A.M., and Zølner, M. (Eds.) 2012. Global Collaboration: Intercultural Experiences and Learning. London: PalgraveMacmillan: 187-206.


Neeley, T. 2015. Global teams that work: A framework for bridging social distance. Harvard Business Review, October 2015, 74-81.


Palus, C.J., Chrobot-Mason, D.L. and Cullen, K.L. 2014. Boundary-Spanning Leadership in an Interdependent World. In Langan-Fox, J. and Cooper, C.L. (Eds.), Boundary Spanning in Organizations: Network, Influence and Conflict. New York: Routledge:  206-229.


Romani, L., Sackmann, S. and Primecz, H. 2011.  Culture as negotiated meanings: the value of considering meaning systems and power imbalance for cross-cultural management. In Primecz, H., Romani, L. and Sackmann, S. (Eds.) .  Cross-Cultural Management in Practice.Culture and Negotiated Meanings. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar: 1-17.


Stahl, G., Mäkelä, K., Zander, L., and Maznevski, M., 2011. A look at the bright side of multicultural team diversity. Scandinavian Journal of Management 26: 439-447.


Søderberg, A.-M. and Romani, L. 2017. Boundary-Spanners in Global Partnerships: A Case Study of an Indian Vendor´s Collaboration with Western Clients. Group & Organization Management, 42(2): 237-278.


Tøth, T. 2015. Theory on trust, chapter II (p.27-51) in Tøth, T.: Trustworthiness: Enabling Global Collaboration - An Ethnographic Study of Trust, Distance, Control, Culture and Boundary Spanning within Offshore Outsourcing of IT Services. PhD Series 03. 2015, Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen. http:/​/​research.cbs.dk/​portal/​da/​publications/​trustworthiness-enabling-global-collaboration(4769810b-4055-463d-82ae-73df7fb01b5c)/​export.html


Van Marrewijk, A. 2010.Situational construction of Dutch-Indian cultural differences in global IT projects. Scandinavian Journal of Management 26: 368-380.



Last updated on 06-05-2021