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PhD Studentship: An Investigation into Multinational Corporations’ Readiness for Global Innovation

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Saturday, March 14, 2020
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

Application details:
Reference number: SBESC-MH20
Start date of studentship: 1 October 2020
Closing date of advert: 14 March 2020
Interview date:

Primary supervisor: Dr Simone Corsi
Secondary supervisor: Professor Mat Hughes

The project will offer a doctoral scholar the opportunity to investigate a highly relevant but under-researched topic at the intersection between international business, strategy and innovation management. This work will break new ground through its focus on ‘geographic ambidexterity’ that reconsiders the basis for multinational corporations (MNCs) to have a readiness for innovation. The candidate will work within the newly established Centre for Corporate Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

Loughborough University

Loughborough University is a top-ten rated university in England for research intensity (REF2014). In choosing Loughborough for your research, you’ll work alongside academics who are leaders in their field. You will benefit from comprehensive support and guidance from our Doctoral College, including tailored careers advice, to help you succeed in your research and future career.

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Full Project Detail

MNCs face one crucial problem above all else: their readiness for innovation and change.

The rising relevance of emerging markets such as China and India has forced western MNCs to adapt their product development and commercialization strategies for those markets. The emerging phenomenon of Reverse Innovation (RI) (von Zedtwitz et al., 2015) shows how MNCs are slowly moving from an approach where they serve emerging markets exclusively by exploiting technologies and products developed and marketed globally to one where they leverage on emerging markets’ inputs for exploring new technological trends to be marketed globally. MNCs are therefore required to develop an ambidextrous strategy at multiple levels (Hughes, 2018).

A first level constituted by the exploitation vs exploration dilemma, and a second one represented by the geographical location of where these will take place, either in emerging or advanced economies. We foresee this to form a new capability termed ‘geographic ambidexterity’. Adopting an ambidextrous innovation strategy for competing globally has become more and more important for western MNCs to (1) address effectively the fastest growing emerging markets; (2) absorb, explore and exploit innovation inputs from those markets; (3) protect their position in home markets from emerging MNCs that expand globally.

This cutting-edge project is underlined by a vital research question: how can MNCs organize geographically to enable an ambidextrous approach to innovation?

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Entry requirements

UK Masters degree (with average programme mark of no less than 65%) or International equivalent. English Language requirement of IELTS band 7.0 or above with not less than 7.0 in each component.

Contact details:
Name: Dr Simone Corsi
Email address:

How to apply

All applications should be made online at Under programme name, select Business School. Please upload with your application a research proposal of a maximum 1,000 words aligned to the project description, copies of your transcripts/certificates, English Language certificate and two academic references.

Please quote reference number: SBESC-MH20

Funding Notes

The studentship provides a tax free stipend of £15,009 per annum for the duration of the studentship plus tuition fees at the UK/EU rate. International (non EU) students may apply however the total value of the studentship will be used towards the cost of the International tuition fee.

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