Martti Ahtisaari International Doctoral Scholarship Programme

  • Year of admission: 2017
  • Home country: Finland
  • Research topic: Firms resource allocation between R&D and marketing in their international expansion. A functional level analysis
  • Main thesis supervisor: Professor Pia-Hurmelinna-Laukkanen

Current strategic management literature does not either explain comprehensively how competitive advantages emerge on a firm function level and literature on dynamic capabilities does not distinguish between firms that have a capacity to shape their business environments and firms that have to adapt to competitive changes. Recent literature on microfoundations decompose dynamic capabilities into sensing, seizing, and reconfiguring processes but lack studies that analyze to which extent individual top management board members a diverse perception of the firms key strategic and operational issues effect on internationalization performance.

This research is aiming at contributing to the prior management literature by exploring how firms with limited resource endowment simultaneously manage their sales & marketing and R&D resources and capabilities when executing an international expansion strategy. SMEs typically have very limited resources and for this reason, international expansion for such firms is a challenging endeavor. Focus of this research is in the firm function-level resources, capabilities, and dynamic capabilities that emerge in firm functions, particularly, in the sales & marketing, R&D, and top management.

Tentative results from authors five research papers indicate that the distinction between those firms that are able to shape their business environments and firms that adapt to changes does not results from resource allocation between firms marketing and R&D function per se, but from managerial ability to exploit the underlying synergies and complementarities.


Previous degrees:

M.Sc. (Econ.), major in Economics, University of Oulu, Department of Economics (1991)

Previous work experience:

Oulu Business School, university teacher, 2008 –

Quum International Oy, co-founder, member of the board of directors,  2013 – 

Suomen Toimitusjohtajakoulu Oy, consultant in international business, 2015 –

Incode Oy, CEO, COO, member of the board of directors, 2001 – 2008

QPR Oyj, CEO, R&D director, 1994 – 2001

University of Oulu, department of economics, research assistant, Yrjö Jahnsson scholarship researcher, 1991 – 1994

Roche Istanbul As, management accounting, 1990 – 1991