Professor Rudolf R Sinkovics

PhD (WU Vienna), MSc (WU Vienna)


Rudolf R. Sinkovics (PhD, WU-Vienna, Austria) is Professor of International Business at The University of Auckland Business School, New Zealand. He is Visiting Professor at LUT University, Finland.

His research writing covers issues of inter-organizational governance, the role of ICT, and research methods in international business. Current work focuses on rising powers and responsible business.

His work has been published in journals such as Journal of International Business Studies, Management International Review, Journal of World Business, International Business Review, Journal of International Management, Journal of Business Research, Journal of International Marketing and International Marketing Review.

He is co-editor-in-chief for critical perspectives on international business, Consulting editor for Journal of World Business and Associate editor for Transnational Corporations and serves on a number of editorial boards.

Research | Current

My research developed originally in the broad area of international marketing in Vienna, Austria. Strong statistical training and proclivity for computer modelling facilitated international visiting appointments (Otago, Michigan) and exposure to contemporary and pertinent research questions that I leveraged into broader research agendas and streams over the years. Broadly, all my work is around three major streams.

  • Relational governance (2001+), and information and communication technologies (ICT) and international business (IB) (2005+): At the heart of the relational governance theme was the question how firms work effectively with each other, despite geographical separation and psychological distance. A lot of the work was carried out within supply-chains or empirical data of manufacturer-international distributor relationships. Fascinated by the emergence of the internet and the role of ICT in reconfiguring buyer-supplier relationships, I pursued a number of studies on the effect of ICT on firm internationalization and inter-firm cooperation and relationships.
  • Methodological issues in IB (2005+): While my original training was based on quantitative techniques and I was lucky enough to be involved in pioneering work around PLS-SEM and probabilistic test theory (Rasch modelling), some of the research questions that I raised, required exploratory design and qualitative methodology. Consequently, I ventured into questions around trustworthiness in qualitative research (e.g. the work on CAQDAS and Nvivo) and recently initiated work using the increasingly useful qualitative comparative analysis (QCA) in IB.
  • Rising powers and global value chains (2010+) and Responsible international Business (2015+): I developed an interest for ‘global challenges’ early on and before the term was adopted in the IB community. In 2010 I joined a multidisciplinary research project around ‘Rising powers and interdependent futures’ which was essentially frontier-research in response to BRIC and sustainability challenges. My particular contribution in this domain was how rising power firm actors shape the ‘rules of the game’. Recent outputs contribute to the conceptual integration of global value chain (GVC) and IB research and I now look at sustainable business models and economic development (e.g. work in Pakistan, India, Bangladesh)

Postgraduate supervision

Note: I welcome PhD applications that fall within the broader research themes listed below.

PhD supervision - broad themes

  • Rising powers: How does the economic dynamism in emerging countries, in particular China, India and Brasil, transform the contours of the global economy and with what consequences? How does the rise of lead firms from these contexts challenge IB theory and point at potentially different patterns of growth? What are the economic and social outcomes of these transformation processes?

  • Global value chains and international business: Global Value Chains (GVCs) have exploded in the past decade and refer to the international dispersion of design, production, assembly, marketing and distribution of services, activities, and products. Analytically, frameworks for GVC analysis have been developed outside the IB field and only recently recognition has developed to build on these frameworks and combine these with IB thinking. What are the consequences for firms (especially smaller firms) to engage and work within GVCs, what are the opportunities to engage and generate both economic and social value? What are the antecedents and consequences of insertion into GVCs and governance dynamics for cross-border collaboration? What about economic and social upgrading?
  • Business strategies and capability development: Business strategies, capabilities and structures vary and change within and across different countries and institutional contexts. Emerging market firms are frequently challenging conventional thinking about innovation and economic development (reverse innovation, catch-up strategies). What are the implications for development of business strategies and capability development?

  • Information and communication technologies, Industry 4.0, platform technologies and international business: ICTs, platforms and recent disruptive technologies have tremendous impacts on inter-firm partnerships, the facilitation of relational exchange and the geographical organization of international business activities. However, the impacts are not uniquely positive (e.g. “virtuality trap”), context dependent and consequences on distributional outcomes (impacts on labour, profit-capture and rents) are not fully understood. New technologies allow for new governance modes, disrupt innovation (e.g. crowdsourcing, open innovation, open access in scholarship, etc.) and impact on the competitiveness of specific sectors.

PhD supervisions - completed

  • Samia Ferdous Hoque (2016): Suppliers’ strategies towards economic and social upgrading: the drivers and the implications. Current position: Research associate, The University of Manchester, AMBS
  • Umair Choksy (2015): Managing global demands in adverse environment and upgrading in global value chains: Resilience of Pakistani software firms. Current Position: Lecturer in International Business, University of Kent.
  • Thomas P. Hiebaum (2013): Product innovation and knowledge protection in the relationship between automotive first-tier suppliers and OEMs in China: an empirical investigation. Current Position: General Manager, Hella Fahrzeugteile Austria.
  • Misagh Tasavori (2012): Corporate social entrepreneurship at the bottom of the economic pyramid: antecedents and outcomes in India. Current position: Senior Lecturer in International Entrepreneurship, University of Essex, UK.
  • Yong Kyu Lew (2011): Governing international technology alliances – innovation capabilities and performance outcomes in the mobile computing market. Current Position: Professor of International Business, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, Seoul, Korea.
  • Shasha Yu/Zhao (2011): The ‘tussle’ between headquarters’ authoritative power and subsidiaries’ resource-based power within multinational enterprises. Current position: Lecturer in International Business and Strategy, Middlesex University, UK.
  • Mohd Haniff Jedin (2010): Marketing implications of merger & acquisitions in Malaysian industries. Current position: Associate Professor in International Business, University Utara, Malaysia.
  • Vassiliki ‘Vicky’ Bamiatzi (2009): Industry and firm level factors contributing to divergence from the industry trend - An examination of UK companies. Current position: Professor of Strategy and International Business, University of Sussex, UK.
  • Ruey-Jer 'Bryan' Jean (2008): The impact of market orientation on international channel relationship, performance and the effect of B2B internet-marketing integration. Current position: Professor of International Business, National Chengchi University, Taipei, Taiwan.

PhD supervisions - current

  • Ji-Hye Kim (started 2016): The drivers of successful partnerships between Business and Civil Society Organisations


Areas of expertise

  • International Business
  • International Marketing
  • Global value chains
  • Responsible international business

Committees/Professional groups/Services

Academic leadership roles

  • Alliance Manchester Business School (AMBS) Internationalisation Lead (2019)
  • AMBS Director of Research (2014-2017)
  • Director Centre for Comparative and International Business Research (CIBER). (2009-2016)
  • Director of Postgraduate Research Training Programme and Masters of Research (MRes) programme at MBS (2009-2011)
  • Head of Comparative and International Business Group (CIB) (2009-2014)
  • Director of Postgraduate Exchange Programme (MSc-level, PIM, 2004-2007)

Memberships of committees and professional bodies

  • Academy of International Business (AIB USA & AIB-UKI, since 1998)
  • British Academy of Management (BAM, UK, since 2003)
  • European International Business Association (EIBA, since 2002)
  • Higher Education Academy, Fellow (former ILTHE Institute of Learning and Teaching, since 2004)
  • Executive Board Member (2005-2015), Academy of International Business (UK & Ireland)
  • Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) peer review college member

External positions

  • Fox Visiting Scholar, Temple University (Aug.2017-Jun.2019)
  • Visiting Professor of International Business, Lappeenranta University of Technology (Nov.2013-Jan.2020)
  • Visiting Scholar, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, USA. (Jul.2008-Sep.2008)
  • Visiting Scholar, Michigan State University, East Lansing, USA. (Feb.2008-Jun.2008)
  • Visiting Scholar, Michigan State University, East Lansing, USA. (Aug.2000-Nov.2000)
  • Visiting Senior Lecturer, University of Otago, NZ. (Jul.1999-Dec.1999)

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

As of 29 October 2020 there will be no automatic updating of 'selected publications and creative works' from Research Outputs. Please continue to keep your Research Outputs profile up to date.
  • Liu, C. L. E., Sinkovics, N., & Sinkovics, R. R. (2020). Achieving relational governance effectiveness: An examination of B2B management practices in Taiwan. Industrial Marketing Management, 90, 453-465. 10.1016/j.indmarman.2020.08.004
  • Sinkovics, R. R., & Sinkovics, N. (2020). The Internet and international marketing - from trigger technology to platforms and new markets. INTERNATIONAL MARKETING REVIEW, 37 (3), 437-446. 10.1108/IMR-07-2019-0185
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Noemi Sinkovics
  • Sinkovics, R. R., Forsgren, M., Sinkovics, N., & Holmstrom Lind, C. (2020). Social value creation in International Business – Introduction to the special issue. critical perspectives on international business, 16 (1), 1-6. 10.1108/cpoib-03-2020-104
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Noemi Sinkovics
  • Kurt, Y., Sinkovics, N., Sinkovics, R. R., & Yamin, M. (2020). The role of spirituality in Islamic business networks: The case of internationalizing Turkish SMEs. Journal of World Business, 55 (1).10.1016/j.jwb.2019.101034
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Noemi Sinkovics
  • Sinkovics, N., Choksy, U. S., Sinkovics, R. R., & Mudambi, R. (2019). Knowledge Connectivity in an Adverse Context: Global Value Chains and Pakistani Offshore Service Providers. Management International Review, 59 (1), 131-170. 10.1007/s11575-018-0372-0
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Noemi Sinkovics
  • Zagelmeyer, S., & Sinkovics, R. R. (2019). MNEs, human rights and the SDGs – the moderating role of business and human rights governance. Transnational Corporations, 26 (3), 33-62. 10.18356/f8a180a3-en
  • Sinkovics, N., Sinkovics, R. R., & Archie–Acheampong J (2019). An overview of social responsibility dimensions in international business. In L. C. Leonidou, C. S. Katsikeas, S. Samiee, C. N. Leonidou (Eds.) Socially responsible international business: Critical issues and the way forward (pp. 29-72). Cheltenham, U.K.: Edward Elgar. 10.4337/9781788114127.00009
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Noemi Sinkovics
  • Sinkovics, N., & Sinkovics, R. R. (2019). International business and global value chains. In S. Ponte, G. Gereffi, G. Raj-Reichert (Eds.) Handbook on global value chains (pp. 417-431). Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar. 10.4337/9781788113779
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Noemi Sinkovics


Contact details

Office hours

Arrangement via email

Primary office location

Level 4, Room 498
New Zealand

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