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The Fast Lane of Internationalization of Latin American SMEs: A Location-Based Approach

Juan M. Gil-Barragan () and María José López-Sánchez ()
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Juan M. Gil-Barragan: Faculty of Administration, Finance and Economic Sciences, EAN University, Bogotá 110221, Colombia
María José López-Sánchez: Department of Economics and Financial Studies, Miguel Hernández University, 3202 Alicante, Spain

Sustainability, 2021, vol. 13, issue 6, 1-20

Abstract: This paper examines how the institutional environment (from a multi-level approach) and the moderating role of innovation networks and rural location explain which mechanism (institutional fostering or escapism) underlies the phenomenon of accelerated internationalization of small and medium-sized enterprises. By analyzing a dataset of 2289 firms from Argentina, Colombia, and Peru, the results suggest that the access of strategic resources and capabilities may either reinforce an institutional fostering or institutional escapism effect. The findings show that institutional fostering is associated with formal institutional voids and rural location, while institutional escapism is associated with local informal institutions, corporate sustainability certifications, and innovation networks. The institutional escapism effect is higher for firms that have social or environmental certifications. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.

Keywords: location; innovation networks; institutional voids; sustainability; informal institutions; internationalization; Latin America (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O13 Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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