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International Business (MSc Business Administration)

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In the International Business (IB) track, you learn about the challenges multinational enterprises (MNEs) face when doing business abroad. This track is one of 9 tracks you can opt for in our Master's in Business Administration.

Help multinationals make the right choices

Globalisation increasingly stimulates firms to expand across borders and become MNEs, which confronts them with macro-level issues related to supranational policies and ‘local’ matters such as market entry mode and internationalisation strategies.

In the International Business track, you investigate the challenges of managing an MNE. Learn how to identify strategies and tools to succeed in foreign markets, discover how large MNEs are structured and managed and become familiar with the range of methods to enter foreign markets.

Devoted team of lecturers

Our international team of lecturers and researchers is devoted to taking you on this challenging intellectual journey. They will invite you to discuss theories, practise them in real-life cases and draw up creative solutions, thus providing you with a solid foundation for a future career in an increasingly globalised business landscape.

More about the track International Business

'This track will make you understand the international business world on a deeper level and it's a great way to also get some cultural knowledge, because your Chinese, North American or African classmate might have a totally different opinion on a certain problem compared to you.' Students talk about their experiences with the programme in this track video.

Why choose the International Business track?

  1. After finishing this track, there will be plenty of international career opportunities for you.
  2. You will gain rigorous academic and practical experience.
  3. Students that finished this track end up in highly paid corporate positions.
Copyright: EB
Hi, I'm Anh! I'm a Master’s student in Business Administration from Vietnam. Got questions about studying at the UvA? Get in touch! Chat with Anh

Track-specific courses

Apart from the general courses of the full programme, you will follow 3 track-specific courses.

  • Theories of International Business

    Explore the basic concepts of international business. Learn about the IB environment, foreign direct investment, global governance, and home and host countries' influence on stakeholders at home and abroad. Become familiar with the increasingly multifaceted and interdependent nature of IB. Specific topics include:

    • conceptualisation of IB and MNE;
    • IB environment, global and regional integration processes;
    • strategies and methods of foreign market entry;
    • role of distance, influence of home and host countries on IB;
    • new typologies of international and emerging market firms.
  • International Business Context (IBC)

    Further explore core topics in IB and corporate governance. In their strategic choices, firms must consider cultural, institutional and regulatory factors. Some of the questions you will research and discuss are: what are the main contextual factors that influence strategic choices? How do nations differ in terms of their (in)formal institutions and national business systems? What are the IB cross-country cultural models? How is corporate governance practiced in different countries?

  • International Strategy

    Although MNEs like Toyota, IBM and Nestlé are extremely successful in their international operations, foreign ventures often flop, like Wal-Mart in Germany. In this course, you examine the challenges that managers face in identifying strategies and tools to help their companies be successful abroad. Examples of questions you will address include: why do firms become multinational? How do they select host countries? What strategies can they follow to manage foreign operations?

Real-life case: COVID-19 and global value chains

Discuss how COVID-19 and associated shocks in the mobility of people and goods are impacting international business within global value chains and how multinational enterprises are coping with risks and uncertainties related to outsourcing and offshoring decisions.

Contemporary issues

The following are only a few of the key questions that arise when examining the current IB landscape:

  • How do recent shifts in geopolitics influence global business?
  • How is the increased connectedness within and across countries changing the way companies operate?
  • How can cultural issues influence the activities of MNEs?
  • How does the introduction of trade tariffs affect a firm’s international strategies?
Arda Elma - track International Business
Copyright: EB
The International Business specialisation offers an in-depth knowledge on European businesses and climates. I feel well prepared to advance in business environments. Arda Elma - track International Business Read about Arda's experiences with this Master's

Career prospects

Graduates of the Master's in Business Administration/International Business track have excellent job prospects for positions as managers, consultants, strategists, online marketers and digital experts in IB, both in the Netherlands and abroad, with international companies such as:

  • Heineken, Shell, Unilever
  • KLM, Port of Rotterdam, Schiphol Group
  • Tata Steel, Tommy Hilfiger
  • ING, Rabobank
  • Deloitte, KPMG, PWC
Facts & Figures
Degree programme MSc International Business
Type Regular study programme
Mode Full-time
Credits 60 ECTS, 12 months
Language of instruction English
Starts in February, September
CROHO code 60644
Location Roeterseiland campus