Africa Rising: Call for Papers

Published on 13th May 2014

Call for Papers

The Inaugural Conference

August 13 – 15, 2014

The Academy of International Business (AIB) is the leading association of scholars and specialists in the field of international business. Established in 1959, the AIB now has over 3,000 members in 87 countries. The AIB has 17 chapters around the world, and recently approved the Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) Chapter. We welcome conceptual and empirical papers, as well as teaching case studies and symposia from scholars, business professionals and policy makers and look forward to seeing you at the inaugural conference of the chapter.

Africa Rising: The Internationalization of African Firms and  the Prospects for Western and Eastern Multinationals

Hosted by: Riara University
Nairobi, Kenya

Submission Deadline: May 24, 2014

Keynote Speakers:

Prof. Elizabeth L. Rose, AIB Vice-President,  University of Otago, NZ

Prof. Patricia McDougall, AIB Vice-President, Indiana University, USA

Prof. Kevin Ibeh, Assistant Dean, Birkbeck, University of London, UK

Prof. Ken N. Kamoche, Director, Africa Research Group, University of Nottingham, UK

Call for Papers – The AIB SSA Inaugural Conference

Once described as “the hopeless continent”, Africa is now widely regarded as “the next growth frontier”! Western multinationals from countries with strong colonial linkages with Africa, such as the UK, France and Portugal, now find themselves competing not only with multinationals from other developed economies, but also with emerging market multinationals from countries such as China and India. In this so-called “New Scramble for Africa,” Africa-based firms are not left behind, as many firms from South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya and other countries have initiated aggressive regional expansion strategies.

To advance our understanding of these recent developments, the AIB Sub-Saharan Africa Chapter is delighted to announce its inaugural conference, with the theme: “Africa Rising: The Internationalization of African Firms and the Prospects for Western and Eastern Multinationals.” The conference welcomes conceptual and empirical papers, as well as teaching case studies and panels from scholars, doctoral, graduate and undergraduate students, business professionals and policy makers, which contribute to a greater understanding of the internationalization strategies and behaviour of African firms, and how foreign-owned multinationals are (re)positioning themselves to win as competition in the product and talent markets within the region intensifies.

The conference will consider unpublished original competitive papers, interactive papers, panels and teaching cases for the following tracks:

Track 1: The Internationalization of African Firms: Strategies, Patterns and Outcomes

Track 2: Doing Business in Africa: Prospects and Challenges for Foreign Multinationals 

Track 3: International Business and Management / General Track

Track 4: Teaching Innovation and Teaching Cases in International Business

Following the AIB ”rule of three”, no author should be associated with more than 3 submissions.

Track 1: The Internationalization of African Firms: Strategies, Patterns & Outcomes

Track Chair: Prof. Amon Chizema, Loughborough University, UK    Email: [email protected]

In the last decade or so, there has been a marked increase in the internationalization activities of African firms within the region, especially “Africa-to-Africa Internationalization”. South African companies such as MTN, SABMiller, Standard Bank, Massmart and Shoprite now have a presence in at least a dozen African countries, and Nigerian firms such as UBA, Dangote, Glo, GTBank and FirstBank are establishing a significant footprint in the region; Togo-based lender, Ecobank, has operations in 33 African countries, Mali-based Bank of Africa with operations in 14 countries, and Kenya’s Equity Bank and KCB with operations in more than four countries. This phenomenal increase in the cross-border activities of African firms provides an interesting opportunity to explore the patterns, strategies, barriers and outcomes of internationalization.

This track welcomes papers that address how regional and inter-regional trade blocs and agreements currently impact on intra-African trade, and in what direction are they likely to evolve in the near future. The track particularly welcomes papers focusing on firm-level internationalization based on one or multiple African countries. The contributions should address, among others, the following research questions: What are the drivers and determinants of location choices and entry mode decisions? Which theories from the broad field of IB are best-suited to explain the internationalization behaviour of African firms? How does the internationalization of African firms contribute to the literature on EMNEs’ internationalization?

Track 2: Doing Business in Africa: Prospects and Challenges for Foreign Multinationals

Track Chair: Dr. Kenneth Amaeshi, University of Edinburgh, UK.   Email: [email protected] 

Many African economies rank poorly on the Global Competitiveness Report, and the social, political and economic environment of business can also be challenging in some countries. In spite of these challenges, foreign MNEs play a dominant role in many African economies, many dating back to the colonial era. In recent years, Chinese companies have started investing heavily across the region, as developed and emerging MNEs try to outcompete themselves in Africa.

This track welcomes papers that address the challenges Africa poses to Western and EMNEs. Indicative research questions include: How does the institutional environment in Africa shape the behaviour of foreign-owned multinationals, and how do the actions of these firms in turn, shape the institutional and competitive environment? How do foreign MNEs deal with institutional voids in African economies? Are EMNEs better placed to deal with the product and labour market challenges that Africa poses compared to Western MNEs? How do firms manage the headquarters-foreign subsidiary relationships? How do workforce localization mandates imposed by countries on foreign MNEs impact on their operations, and how are they meeting these targets? How do normative or informal rules such as culture and social norms shape MNEs’ management strategies and practices?

Track 3:  International Business and Management / General Track

Track Chair: Prof. Francis Wambalaba, United States International University, Kenya.

Email: [email protected] 

This is a general track. International business and (comparative) management papers that do not directly fit the conference theme are welcome. We seek papers and panels on the internationalization of EMNEs from Asia, Latin America and the Middle East, as well as papers in other IB areas including but not limited to: international marketing (at the bottom of the pyramid), international accounting, economics and finance, international entrepreneurship, international political economy, international HRM, and global social responsibility.

Track 4: Teaching Innovation and Teaching Cases in International Business

Track Chair: Dr. Chris Ogbechie, Pan-Atlantic University, Nigeria.  Email: [email protected]    

This track welcomes competitive, interactive and panel submissions on teaching innovation and teaching cases in the following areas: IB curriculum design, using multimedia, experiential learning on IB courses, teaching cases and using cases to teach IB. For teaching case submissions, only real-life cases that are aligned with the conference theme are invited. Cases can be field-researched or based on published sources, decision-oriented or descriptive. We welcome cases that have only recently been registered in case clearing houses such as ECCH/The Case Centre.


Competitive papers must not exceed 10,000 words, and must comply to the JIBS style requirements; Please refer to

Interactive papers should be around 2,000 – 5,000 words. Submissions should clearly state the research questions, methodology and contribution. The main results and implications for IB research and practice should be discussed, if available/applicable.

Teaching cases should be around 2,000 – 5,000 for interactive/‘embryo’ cases and no more than 10,000 words for competitive cases.

Panel proposals should have 3 – 5 scholars and/or students and a common theme, as well as a chair/discussant. We welcome a variety of proposals (paper presentations, roundtable, and professional development workshop). The names of participants and the discussant should be disclosed for this type of submission.

Competitive papers, interactive papers and teaching cases will be double-blind reviewed; please do not include any author-identifying information. Authors are strongly encouraged to assist in the review process. 

To submit your work, please email your paper to [email protected].

Please state the submission type (competitive, interactive, panel) and track on the front page at the top right. In addition, for doctoral (DS)/graduate (GS)/undergraduate students (US), please indicate ‘DS’, ‘GS’, or ‘US’.  

Journal of International Business Studies Paper Development Workshop

In line with the SSA chapter’s goal to promote research excellence and improve the quality of IB research in the region, distinguished IB scholars will be offering a paper development workshop (PDW), at which authors have the opportunity to receive individualized feedback on their work. Doctoral candidates, junior faculty, and those new to the field of IB are particularly encouraged to attend the workshop. The Paper Development Workshop will be facilitated by distinguished IB scholars, including Prof. Elizabeth Rose and Prof. Patricia McDougall.

Best Conference Paper Awards

Awards will be given to the overall best (competitive) paper submitted to the conference, as well as the most outstanding paper/case in each of the four tracks. The programme committee will select winning papers through a blind, competitive process.

Publication Opportunities

The best papers and other outstanding papers that are aligned with the conference theme will be considered and selected for inclusion in a special issue of a reputable journal or an edited book which will be connected to the conference.

Registration Fees:

AIB Members: US$130.00 (Kshs. 11,050) for early and $180 (Kshs. 15,300) for late registration.

Non-members: US$150.00 (Kshs.12, 500) for early and US$200 (Kshs. 17,000) for late registration.

Students: US$100 (Kshs. 8,500) 

Accompanying Partners: US$100 (Kshs. 8,500)

The registration fee includes conference materials, refreshments and lunches, but not accommodation or travel costs. For AIB membership visit:

Conference fees may be paid to: Riara University Account at Kenya Commercial Bank, Prestige Branch, Account number 1132688035 (Swift Code: KCBLKENX Branch Code: 01259 for international transactions) or send to Mpesa Paybill no. 805702. Email scanned copy as proof of payment.

Key Dates:

Paper /Abstract/Cases/Symposia Submission – May 24, 2014
Notification of Accepted Papers and Papers – June 20, 2014
Conference (Early) Registration Deadline – June 30, 2014
The Inaugural Conference – August 13 – 15, 2014
Submission of Selected Papers for Publication – December 31, 2014

Networking and Experiential Learning Journey to Nairobi!

Network and develop collaborative opportunities with international scholars, business executives and students at the welcome reception, gala dinner, and field visits to some of the leading multinationals based in Nairobi.

Explore Magical Kenya!

From the thriving modern city of Nairobi, to the beautiful white sand beaches of Mombasa’s South Coast, to the forests of Kakagema and Mount Kenya, to the Lake Victoria, Kenya, officially the world’s leading safari destination, is great for vacation with family and friends. We particularly recommend a tour of The Maasi Mara, the 8th New Wonder of the World!

More details on tour packages and accommodation will be provided later.

Further enquiries:

Prof. Abel Kinoti – AIB SSA Chair
School of Business, Riara University, Kenya  I    Email:
[email protected]  
Telephone: + 254 703 038 420  I   + 254 703 038 421

Dr. Ifedapo Adeleye – AIB SSA Conference Organizer
Lagos Business School, Pan-Atlantic University, Nigeria I  Email:
[email protected]
Conference Website:

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