PortEconomics members Michaël Dooms, Larissa Van Der Lugt, Francesco Parola, Giovanni Satta, joined by Dong-Wook Song (World Maritime University) in their latest port study, published at the scientific journal Maritime Policy and Management, aimed to establish a framework being conceptually able to explain a variety of internationalization strategies and related activities employed by port managing bodies (PMBs), as defined by the European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO) in 2018, considering their hybrid nature. Having identified a potential to further the existing literature on port policy and strategy in general and port internationalization strategy in specific, the paper examines theoretical frameworks and methodologies from the literature on international business that could be applicable to this field.
The main objective is to define a conceptual and analytical framework to examine PMB international strategies, which include both inward and outward steps, also discriminating various internationalization patterns (operating modes). In particular, the authors investigate if the success (or failure) of PMB outward operations is affected by inward (previous) steps.
The study tests and validates the proposed conceptual model through multiple embedded case studies, which originate from diverse economic and institutional settings in Rotterdam, Shanghai and Singapore and provides a meaningful insight into discrepancies that could exist in internationalization strategies adopted by conventional business firms and PMBs since they are envisaged to show different trajectories in a number of areas.
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