Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE credits
The healthcare service sector has recently entered the global arena and many nations sectors
has opened up for private initiatives, which is explained by the rapid development and
structural changes within the industry. However, regardless of considerable interest in the area
among academics, very little has been concluded in terms of investigating internationalization
of healthcare related services. The purpose of this study is to contribute with an enriched
understanding regarding how Swedish medical service SMEs internationalize and what
factors influence how - and in what way - the process unfolds. A conceptual model is
developed, extending the theoretical discussion by integrating established SME and
entrepreneurship literature with extant IB literature relevant for political salient industries.
Conducting an exploratory multiple case study, rich empirical data is collected and analyzed
in the light of the conceptual model. The research findings indicate that knowledge, networks,
and institutional factors influence how the internationalization process of medical service
SMEs unfolds to a large extent. The research contributes by concluding that the nature of the
service as well as the home market institutional context constitute pivotal influential factors
on the firms’ internationalization process and are added to the refined conceptual framework.
2013. , 65 p.
SMEs; Healthcare Services; Internationalization Process; Networks; Knowledge; Institutional Context