Call for Papers: Focused Issue on "MNCs and Social Innovation in Emerging Markets".

Date01 Agosto 2022

Focused Issue Editors:

Samuel Adomako, University of Birmingham, UK (

Xiaohui Liu, University of Birmingham, UK (X.Liu,

Riikka M Sarala, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA (

Mujtaba Ahsan, San Diego State University, USA (

Jeoung Yul Lee, Hongik University, South Korea / Chongqing Technology and Business

University, China (ieoungyul@hongik,ac,kr)

Oded Shenkar, The Ohio State University, USA (

Submission Deadline: May 30, 2023

Overview and Motivation for this Focused Issue

Social innovation is an important concept in the field of innovation. Defined as novel solutions to effectively and efficiently address social problems and needs for social progress (Adomako, & Tran, 2021; Lee, Spanjol, & Sun, 2019), social innovation is considered a cornerstone for tackling global grand social challenges (Lee, Spanjol & Sun, 2019) such as social inequality, poverty, climate change, pollution, energy security, unemployment, food safety and health care. Unlike pure commercial innovation, social innovation addresses social or environmental needs without a profit motive (Steinfield, & Holt, 2019).

While the IB literature provides valuable insights on various aspects of social innovation research (Rygh, 2020), the relationship between multinational corporations (MNCs) and social innovation has received sporadic attention in mainstream international business (IB) research (Dionisio & de Vargas, 2020). There is a lack of theory development which integrates the IB literature with social innovation studies; for example, we have little knowledge about how both formal and informal institutions affect the co-creational process of social innovation in MNCs. Such a tension points to the need to examine the relationship between institutional arrangements and social innovation.

Relatedly, our understanding of when, and how, social innovation may be driven by MNCs in precarious institutional contexts such as those mostly found in emerging markets is fairly limited (Onsongo, 2019; Turker & Vural, 2017). Further, while existing IB theories tend to underpin MNCs' profit maximization objective in terms of their investment motives and cross-border operations, it is important to bring social innovation to the forefront of IB research by developing and extending IB theories to account for the sources and nature of social innovation in MNCs. These knowledge gaps present challenges...

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