Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

International Journal of Management and Economics

4 Issues per year

Open Access
See all formats and pricing
More options …

Internationalization by State-owned Enterprises (SOEs) and Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs) after the 2008 Crisis. Looking for Generalizations

Marta Götz / Barbara Jankowska
Published Online: 2016-07-15 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijme-2016-0012


This paper seeks to detect (post) crisis tendencies in the international activities of state-owned enterprises (SOE) and sovereign wealth funds (SWF) and identify the main challenges posed in exploring this topic. In doing so it draws on the inductive approach and qualitative method and discusses available studies on recent internalization trends in SOEs and SWFs. The number of SWFs worldwide has been rising since 2008, despite the 2008 crisis which brought heavy losses and negative publicity that caused a rerouting of funds towards domestic purposes. The long-term perspective adopted by SWFs is expected to make less vulnerable to financial market volatility, which should stimulate FDI. SOTNCs are a minority among SOEs in general, i.e. only a fraction of SOEs worldwide can be labeled as state-owned transnational companies; and no exceptional impact of the 2008 crisis is apparent in their functioning The review of selected literature and UNCTAD survey reports is the basis for our conclusions and suggestions for future research avenues.

Keywords: foreign direct investment (FDI); sovereign wealth fund (SWF); state-owned enterprise (SOE); 2008+ crisis

JEL: F00; F21; F23; G18; G30


  • Ambastha, A., Momaya, K. (2004), Competitiveness of Firms: Review of Theory, Frameworks, and Models, Singapore Management Review, Vol. 26, No. 1, pp. 45–61.Google Scholar

  • Amable, B. (2003), The diversity of modern capitalism, UK, Oxford University Press.Google Scholar

  • Andersson, L. M., Bateman, T. S. (1997), Cynicism in the Workplace: Some Causes and Effects, Journal of Organizational Behavior, Vol. 18, No. 5, pp. 449–469.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Andreosso-O’Callaghan, B., Jacobson, D. (1996), Industrial Economics and Organisation, McGraw-Hill, London.Google Scholar

  • Aron, R., Singh, J. V. (2005), Getting Offshoring Right, Harvard Business Review, Vol. 83, No. 12, pp. 135–143.Google Scholar

  • Auer, P., Besse, G., Méda, D., (2006), Offshoring and the Internationalization of Employment, in: P. Auer, G. Besse, D. Méda (eds.), Offshoring and the Internationalization of Employment. A Challenge for a Fair Globalization?, ILO, Geneva, pp. 1–16.Google Scholar

  • Aulakh, P., Gencturk, E. F. (2000), International principal – agent relationships. Control, governance and performance, Industrial Marketing Management, Vol. 29, No. 6, pp. 521–538.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Bass, A. E., Chakrabarty, S. (2014), Resource security: Competition for global resources, strategic intent, and governments as owner, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 45, No. 8, pp. 961–979. doi:10.1057/jibs.2014.28CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Barney, J. B. (1991), Firm Resources and Sustained Competitive Advantage, Journal of Management, Vol. 17, No. 1, pp. 99–120.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Barney, J. B. (2002), Gaining and Sustaining Competitive Advantage, 2nd ed. Prentice-Hall, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey.Google Scholar

  • Barney, J. B., Clark, D. N. (2009), Resource-Based Theory. Creating and Sustaining Competitive Advantage, Oxford University Press, Oxford, New York.Google Scholar

  • Bernard, R. H. (2011), Research Methods in Anthropology. Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches, Altamira Press, Oxford.Google Scholar

  • Bruton G., Peng V, Ahlstrom D., Stan C., Xu K., (2015), State-owned enterprises around the world as hybrid organizations, The Academy of Management Perspectives, Vol. 29, No. 1, pp. 92–114, available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.5465/amp.2013.0069Crossref

  • Cahen F. R., (2014), Internationalization of state-owned enterprises through foreign direct investment, RAE, São Paulo, Vol. 55, No. 6, pp. 645–659, available at: DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0034–759020150603Crossref

  • Chen, Y. Y., Young, M. N. (2010), Cross-border mergers and acquisitions by Chinese listed companies: A principal – principal perspective, Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Vol. 27, No. 3, pp. 523–539.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Choroszczak, J. (2015), The signs of organizational pathology in companies wholly owned by the State Treasury – the identification and the analysis of the causes of the phenomenon studied, in: A. Nalepka, A. Ujwary-Gil (eds.), Business and non-profit organizations facing increased competition and growing customers’ demands. Wyższa Szkoła Biznesu National Louis University, Nowy Sącz, Vol. 14, pp. 23–37.Google Scholar

  • Choudhury, P., Khana, T. (2014), Toward Resource Independence – Why State-Owned Entities Become Multinationals: An Empirical Study of India’s Public R&D Laboratories, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 45, No. 8, pp. 943–960.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Christiansen, H., Kim, Y. (2014), State-Invested Enterprises in the Global Marketplace: Implications for a Level Playing Field, OECD Corporate Governance Working Papers, No. 14, OECD Publishing, available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/5jz0xvfvl6nw-enCrossref

  • Crouch, C. (2005), Models of capitalism, New political economy, Vol. 10, No. 4, pp. 439–456.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Cuervo-Cazurra, A., Inkpen, A., Musacchio, A., Ramaswamy, K. (2014), Governments as Owners: State-Owned Multinational Companies, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 45, No. 8, pp. 919–942.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Cui, L., Jiang, F. (2012), State ownership effect on firms’ FDI ownership decisions under institutional pressure: A study of Chinese outward-investing firms, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 43, No. 2, pp. 264–284.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Duanmu, J. L. (2014), State-owned MNCs and host country expropriation risk: The role of home state soft power and economic gunboat diplomacy, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 45, No. 8, pp. 1044–1060.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Ecorys (2013), Exchange of Good Practice in Foreign Direct Investment Promotion, a study carried out under the Framework Contract ENTR/2009/033, Final Report, 2nd revision Rotterdam.Google Scholar

  • Estrin, S., Hanousek, J., Kocenda, E., Svejnar, J. (2009), The effects of privatization and ownership in transition economies, Journal of Economic Literature, Vol. 47, No. 3, pp. 699–728.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Estrin, S., Meyer, K. E., Nielsen, B. B., Nielsen, S. (2012), The Internationalization of State Owned Enterprises: The Impact of Political Economy and Institutions, available at: http://personal.lse.ac.uk/estrin/Publication%20PDF’s/Internationalization%20of%20SOEs.pdf, accessed: 11 January, 2016.

  • Garcia-Canal, E., Guillen, M. F. (2008), Risk and the strategies of foreign location choice in regulated industries, Strategic Management Journal, Vol. 29, pp. 1097–1115.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Gomm, R., Hammersley, M. Foster, P. (2009), Case study method, SAGE.Google Scholar

  • Gorynia, M. (2007), Studia nad transformacją i internacjonalizacją gospodarki polskiej, Difin, Warszawa.Google Scholar

  • Gorynia, M., Nowak, J., Trąpczyński, P., Wolniak, R. (2013), Overview and Evaluation of Policy Measures Supporting Outward FDI: The Case of Poland, in: E. Kaynak, T. D. Harcar, (eds.), Flexibility, Innovation and Adding Value as Drivers of Global Competitiveness: Private and Public Sector Challenges, proceedings of the Twenty Second World Business Congress, National Taipei University, Taipei, Republic of China (Taiwan), pp. 108–115.Google Scholar

  • Hall, P. A., Soskice, D. (2001), An introduction to varieties of capitalism, in: P. A. Hall, S. Soskice, (eds.), Varieties of capitalism – the institutional foundations of comparative advantage, UK: Oxford University Press, pp. 1–68.Google Scholar

  • Hodgson. G. M. (1996), Varieties of Capitalism and varieties of economic theory, Review of International Political Economy, Vol. 3, No. 3, pp. 380–433.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Hufbauer, G. C., Cimino-Isaacs C. (2015), What You Need to Know about the Trans-Pacific Partnership, Peterson Institute for International Economics, Op-ed published by the PBS News Hour, Reposted with permission, 23 June, 2015.Google Scholar

  • Jankowska, B., Gorynia, M., Dzikowska, M. (2015), Economic crisis as an internationalization trigger in a transition economy? Addressing the ambiguity issue, paper presented at the 41st Annual International EIBA Conference, Rio de Janeiro.Google Scholar

  • Knutsen, C. H., Rygh, A., Hveem, H. (2011), Does state ownership matter? Institutions’ effect on foreign direct investment revisited, Business and Politics, Vol. 13, No. 1, pp. 1–33. available at: DOI:10.2202/1469–3569.1314CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Kwiatkowski, G. (2013), Własność państwowa a rola państwa we współczesnej gospodarce, Studia Ekonomiczne, Uniwersytet Ekonomiczny w Katowicach, No. 139, pp. 228–237.Google Scholar

  • Li, M. H., Cui, L., Lu, J. (2014), Varieties in state capitalism: Outward FDI strategies of central and local stateowned enterprises from emerging economy countries, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 45, No. 8, pp. 980–1004.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Liang, H, Ren, B., Sun, S. L. (2015), An anatomy of state control in the globalization of state-owned enterprises, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 46, No. 2, pp. 223–240.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Meyer, K., Ding, Y., Li, J., Zhang, H. (2014), Overcoming distrust: How state-owned enterprises adapt their foreign entries to institutional pressures abroad, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 45, No. 8, pp. 1005–1028.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Morck, R., Yeung, B., Zhao, M. (2008), Perspectives on China’s outward foreign direct investment, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 39, No. 3, pp. 337–350.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Mazzolini, R. (1980), The international strategy of state-owned firms: An organizational process and politics perspective. Strategic Management Journal, Vol. 1, No. 2, pp. 101–118, available at: DOI:10.1002/smj.4250010202CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Pan, Y., Teng, L., Supapol, A. B., Lu, X., Huang, D., Wang, Z. (2014), Firms’ FDI Ownership: The Influence of Government Ownership and Legislative Connections, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 45, No. 8, pp. 1029–1043.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Neuman, W. L. (2003), Social Research Methods: Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches, Pearson.Google Scholar

  • Ramaswamy, B., Yeung, M., Laforet, S. (2012), China’s outward foreign direct investment: Location choice and firm ownership, Journal of World Business, Vol. 47, No. 1, pp. 17–25.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Redding, G. (2005), The thick description and comparison of societal systems of capitalism, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 36, No. 2, pp. 123–155.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Torres, M. M. (2014), Pro-Internationalization Policy and Outward Foreign Investment, AIB Insights, Vol. 14, No. 3, pp. 16–17.Google Scholar

  • Vickers, J., Yarrow, G. (1992), Economic perspectives on privatization, Journal of Economic Perspectives, Vol. 5, No. 2, pp. 111–132.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Wang, C. Q., Hong, J. J., Kafouros, M., Wright, M. (2012), Exploring the role of government involvement in outward FDI from emerging economies, Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 43, No. 7, pp. 655–676.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Whitley, R. (1999), Divergent capitalisms – the social structuring and change of business systems, New-York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar

  • World Investment Report (2009), Transnational Corporations, Agricultural Production and Development, UNCTAD.Google Scholar

  • World Investment Report (2010), Investing in a low-carbon economy, UNCTAD.Google Scholar

  • World Investment Report (2011), Non-equity modes of international production and development, UNCTAD.Google Scholar

  • World Investment Report (2012), Towards a New Generation of Investment Policies, UNCTAD.Google Scholar

  • World Investment Report (2013), Global Value Chains: Investment and Trade for Development, UNCTAD.Google Scholar

  • World Investment Report (2014), Investing in the SDGs: An Action Plan, UNCTAD.Google Scholar

  • World Investment Report (2015), Reforming International Investment Governance, UNCTAD.Google Scholar

  • Yin, R. K. (1984), Case study research: Design and methods. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.Google Scholar

  • Zhang, J., Zhou, C., Ebbers, H. (2010), Completion of Chinese overseas acquisitions: Institutional perspectives and evidence, International Business Review, Vol. 20, No. 2, pp. 226–238.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

About the article

Published Online: 2016-07-15

Published in Print: 2016-06-01

Citation Information: International Journal of Management and Economics, Volume 50, Issue 1, Pages 63–81, ISSN (Online) 2299-9701, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijme-2016-0012.

Export Citation

© 2016 Marta Götz et al., published by De Gruyter Open. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. BY-NC-ND 3.0

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in