Systematic Literature Reviews in International Marketing: From the Past to the Future

Call for papers for: International Marketing Review

Guest Editors:

Professor Demetris Vrontis (IMR Associate Editor and Supervising Guest Editor), School of Business, University of Nicosia, President – EuroMed Academy of Business
Professor John Hulland (Guest Editor), Emily H. and Charles M. Tanner, Jr. Chair, Terry College of Business, University of Georgia, Editor-in-Chief – Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science
Professor Jason D. Shaw (Guest Editor), Shaw Foundation Chair in Business, Nanyang Business School, Nanyang Technological University, Editor-in-Chief – Academy of Management Journal
Professor Ajai Gaur (Guest Editor), Rutgers Business School, Newark and New Brunswick, Editor-in-Chief – Journal of World Business
Professor Michael Czinkota (Guest Editor), McDonough School of Business, Georgetown University
Dr Michael Christofi (Guest Editor), Senior Research Fellow, University of Nicosia

Science evolves when research is developed in a way that builds logically from the existing knowledge base. New research then reconciles inconsistencies of the findings from prior studies, expands the boundaries of the domain, and reveals new research gaps that provide fruitful directions for further research. Inefficiency appears when studies are ad hoc and are not based on the underlying knowledge base. Hence, it is necessary for the researchers to have a state-of-the-art understanding of extant literature. Systematic literature reviews aim to fulfil that necessity (Gaur & Kumar, 2018; Palmatier et al., 2018; Littell et al., 2008).

The interest and rationale of various high-impact publication outlets on systematic literature reviews lies on the significance of such review articles towards the research integration and synthesis of an accumulated body of knowledge and in guiding future research efforts, a necessary step in the scientific process (Palmatier et al., 2018). Systematic review papers provide the means to identify, critically evaluate and synthesize an existing body of knowledge in a transparent, rigorous and replicable method (Vrontis & Christofi, 2019; Denyer & Tranfield, 2009; Littell et al., 2008). With an increasing body of knowledge in various business disciplines, there is an increasing need to consolidate, structure, and synthesize extant literature. This is particularly important for specialized fields such as International Marketing and International Business, due to a relatively limited number of systematic reviews in these fields (Gaur & Kumar, 2018; Palmatier et a.l, 2018; Paul, 2017). This special issue aims to encourage scholars to publish systematic literature review articles in different thematic topics within the broad field of International Marketing.

Aims and Scope
Against this background, the aim of this special issue is threefold. First, it aims to publish review articles that include a compelling summary of the state-of-the-art in a well-researched subject area within or in relation to the International Marketing field. Second, one of the important purposes of this special review issue is to provide ideas and directions for academics to undertake novel research, instead of doing repetitive and recycled types of research. Thus, we encourage scholars to review and synthesize widely used theories, methods and contexts in the field of international marketing. The objective of such reviews should be to identify research gaps and develop agendas for further enquiry. Third, this special issue aims to include review articles that explore the links between the International Marketing area and research streams in related disciplines, such as Human Resource Management, International Business, Finance, Law, Consumer Psychology, etc.. The special issue editors encourage scholars to submit review articles that demonstrate the value of cross-fertilization of ideas between International Marketing and other research streams, both within and outside the business field, and establish an agenda for future research.

We invite systematic literature reviews of various types and approaches (Palmatier et al., 2018), including:

1.    Domain-based review articles within International Marketing. Domains are broad areas of research that incorporate theories, constructs, and procedures, whereas a collection of domains constitutes a discipline. In this case, the discipline of marketing includes domains such as international marketing, services, strategic planning, relationships, and advertising (MacInnis, 2011). Thus, in this call for papers, domain-based review articles focus on reviewing a specific area within the International Marketing domain (e.g.,  Christofi et al., 2017; Chen et al., 2016).

2.    Multi-disciplinary reviews, whereas one of the disciplines relates to International Marketing (e.g., Yang & Gabrielsson, 2018).

3.    Methodology-based reviews related to International Marketing research (e.g., Hulland et al., 2018).

4.    Theory-based reviews related to the International Marketing research (e.g., Kozlenkova et al., 2014).

Areas of investigation could include (but are not limited to):

International market entry and modes of operation
-     International mergers and acquisitions
-     IJVs and customer value
-     Market entry strategies

Export marketing and supply chain issues
-     Export strategy
-     Export market orientation

International channel management
-     International marketing relationships
-     B2B relationships and culture

International marketing and consumer identity
-    Consumer ethnocentrism
-    Country of origin
-    Country image
-    Nationalism and political psychology issues

Cultural considerations in international marketing
-    Religion and international marketing
-    Consumer culture
-    Consumer acculturation
-    Intercultural service encounters

International marketing strategy
-    Internationalization
-    Segmentation
-    Adaptation /standardization
-    Globalization

International marketing management
-    International branding
-    International advertising
-    New product development

Cross-disciplinary issues in International Marketing
-    Technology, information systems, internet of things (IoT) and international marketing
-    Ethics and international marketing
-    Data privacy and international marketing
-    HR and international marketing
-    Big data and international marketing
-    Resources capabilities, resource-based view (RBV), knowledge-based view (RBV) and international marketing
-    Legal issues in international marketing
-    Finance and international marketing
-    MNEs and international marketing
-    Entrepreneurship and international marketing
-    Micro businesses and international marketing
-    Marketing and international social enterprises

Domain-based interdisciplinary topics in Marketing
-    Social media and international marketing
-    Prosocial consumer behaviour/ social marketing and international marketing
-    Internal marketing issues in international marketing research
-    Retailing and international marketing research
-    Customer relationship management and international marketing research
-    New marketing technologies and MNEs

Methodology-based topics in International Marketing Research
-    International marketing survey research best practices
-    Qualitative research in international marketing
-    Use of big data and methodology issues in international marketing research
-    Longitudinal research in international marketing

Pre-submission Special Issue Conference Workshop

Authors considering submitting to the Special Issue have the opportunity to participate in the IMR Paper Development Workshop and present their work at a Special Issue workshop, to be held at the 13th Annual EuroMed Academy of Business (EMAB) conference in Palermo, Sicily (16-18 September 2020) Authors submitting papers to the workshop will be able to present their work, get feedback on the suitability of the papers for the special issue, and build on this feedback prior to submitting to the special issue. Attending the conference and/or submitting a manuscript to IMR for publication consideration in this special issue are independent activities; authors are welcome to engage in one or both of these activities.

Submission Information

Papers targeting the special issue should be submitted through the IMR submission system and will undergo a similar review process as regularly submitted papers. Submissions for the special issue begin 14 September 2020 with the final deadline for submissions being 31 December 2020.

Questions pertaining to the special issue should be directed to Dr Michael Christofi (Managing Guest Editor) [email protected] and Professor Demetris Vrontis [email protected]


Chen, J., Sousa, C. M., & He, X. (2016). The determinants of export performance: a review of the literature 2006-2014. International Marketing Review, 33(5), 626–670.

Christofi, M., Leonidou, E., & Vrontis, D. (2017). Marketing research on mergers and acquisitions: a systematic review and future directions. International Marketing Review, 34(5), 629–651.

Denyer, D., & Tranfield, D. (2009). Producing a systematic review. In D. Buchanan, & A. Bryman (Eds.). The sage handbook of organizational research methods (pp. 671–689). London: Sage.

Gaur, A. S., & Kumar, M. (2018). A systematic approach to conducting review studies: An assessment of content analysis in 25 years of IB research. Journal of World Business, 53 (2): 280–289.

Hulland, J., Baumgartner, H., & Smith, K. M. (2018). Marketing survey research best practices: evidence and recommendations from a review of JAMS articles. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 46(1), 92–108.

Kozlenkova, I. V., Samaha, S. A., & Palmatier, R. W. (2014). Resource-based
theory in marketing. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 42(1), 1–21.

Littell, J. H., Corcoran, J., & Pillai, V. (2008). Systematic reviews and meta-analysis. New York: Oxford University Press.

MacInnis, D. J. (2011). A framework for conceptual contributions in marketing. Journal of Marketing, 75(4), 136–154.
Palmatier, R. W., Houston, M. B., & Hulland, J. (2018). Review articles: purpose, process, and structure. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 46, 1–5.

Paul, J. (2017) From the Guest Editor, The International Trade Journal, 31(5), 399–401.

Vrontis, D., & Christofi, M. (2019). R&D internationalization and innovation: A systematic review, integrative framework and future research directions. Journal of Business Research. DOI:

Yang, M., & Gabrielsson, P. (2018). The Interface of International Marketing and Entrepreneurship Research: Review, Synthesis, and Future Directions. Journal of International Marketing, 26(4), 18–37.