Browsing by Subject "Internationalization"

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  • Hahl, Kaisa (University of Helsinki, 2016)
    Tutkimuksia / Helsingin yliopisto, käyttäytymistieteellinen tiedekunta, opettajankoulutuslaitos
    This dissertation examines factors that distinguish an international English-medium instruction (EMI) teacher education programme from mainstream teacher education programmes. International teacher education is understood in this study as a transdisciplinary programme that is taught in English as a lingua franca (ELF) and that admits both international and domestic students. The students thus originate from different backgrounds and they are not all familiar with the local school system. The programme is mostly taught by teacher educators educated in the local context. This study explores student teachers and teacher educators conceptions and experiences of and adjustment to multiculturalism and English as a lingua franca in a Finnish university context. The purpose of this dissertation is to investigate the roles that these factors play in implementing an international subject teacher education programme within the context of local (teacher) education. This PhD study consists of five separate but interrelated studies that together form a more holistic picture of the phenomena studied. The five sub-studies examine the phenomena from different perspectives and aim at highlighting issues that are important for programme development. The sub-studies use various data collection methods: interviews, focus groups, student course work, questionnaires, and an excerpt from a recorded lecture. The data analysis methods consist of discursive pragmatics, thematic analysis and qualitative content analysis. As its theoretical contribution this study weaves together the four factors of internationalization, interculturality (including the inclusion of immigrant teachers in local schools as an intercultural phenomenon), transdisciplinarity and English as a lingua franca, and conceptualizes their interrelations. On the one hand, this study reveals the complexity of constructing an international teacher education programme. On the other hand, the study provides a model for supporting teaching and learning in the context of international, transdiscipinary teacher education in order for it to serve the needs and demands of today s students, teachers, institutions and societies.
  • Tikkanen, Elina (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    Internationalization provides firms a significant opportunity for growth and value creation worldwide. Especially those companies that operate in small and open economies tend to benefit from foreign market expansion. For example, the small size of Finland’s economy sets limitations to the domestic market opportunities. In addition to Finland’s macro-level strengths, Finnish companies’ innovativeness has gained attention as a potential sustained competitive advantage to support firm internationalization. Despite the identified potential, the Finnish food sector’s internationalization has been modest, and the research in this field has been limited. Thus, this thesis studies the internationalization phenomenon in the context of innovative Finnish food sector companies. The purpose of the research is to explore firm internationalization from the process perspective by investigating companies’ time-based decision making and behavior. The thesis aims to find out how and why do innovative Finnish food companies internationalize? The research was carried out as a qualitative study because the purpose was to form an in-depth understanding of the internationalization processes of Finnish food companies. In addition to the empirical research, an extensive literature review of various internationalization theories was conducted to develop a theoretical framework of the studied phenomenon. A multiple-case study was selected as the research strategy and two case-companies were selected, one representing a young SME and the other well established MNE. Both case companies were of Finnish origin, they operated in the food sector and had experience of expanding into international markets. The research data was collected through semi-structured interviews with company representatives, as well as by reviewing companies’ websites, publications, annual reports, and newspaper articles. The key findings of this study show that, in line with the initial hypothesis, food companies can utilize different internationalization strategies depending on their internal capabilities and resources. The accumulation of decisions regarding main internationalization dimensions and the actions taken based on these decisions in relation to time showed two different internationalization processes. The MNE had internationalized incrementally in line with traditional internationalization theories. On the contrary, the SME had internationalized early and rapidly on a global level. In addition, the company’s product portfolio was found to have a significant impact on decision-making and company-level behavior. Lastly, the innovativeness and uniqueness of both the products and the company’s know-how were shown to have a positive impact on achieving a sustainable competitive advantage on a global level.
  • Evokari, Auri (Helsingfors universitet, 2016)
    While the economy in Finland is stagnating, the growing economy of Kenya creates much needed export opportunities for Finnish companies. However, only a few have dared to enter this market. This thesis explores this issue from a cultural point of view – how do Finnish people conducting business in Kenya experience the business culture in Kenya, the markets and the future of them? By specifically focusing on Kenya and Finland, this thesis examines the results of the extensive culture research done by Geert Hofstede. We discover that East African countries are culturally a lot closer to Finland than some of Finland’s most important trade partners such as Russia or China. The relevance of this research is discussed in mind of the development in wealth, technological strides and the generational change under way especially in Sub Saharan Africa. In this qualitative research we gain the understanding of how Finnish business representatives experience the Cultural Dimensions of Power Distance and Individualism in Kenya, what kind of opportunities they recognize and what challenges they have encountered. The findings show that the high power distance and collectivist business culture in Kenya is still evident, but does not pose serious threats to operating in Kenya. The experiences and views of the business culture and markets in Kenya are generally very positive. The challenges encountered are of practical nature, with corruption being the biggest issue. When comparing to other countries, Kenya is viewed as an easy culture to adopt into and the markets are deemed more favorable there than in many other countries. Advice regarding the attitude of Finnish company representatives and ways on how to make market entries are shared. Governmental actions and the way media is displaying Africa are criticized by the interviewees.