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Journal of Business Venturing

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This research integrates the international business and entrepreneurship literatures by examining the independent influences of innovativeness, proactiveness, and risk-taking on the ability of a firm to broaden its scope across international markets. For each dimension of entrepreneurial orientation, a cost–benefit framework is applied to highlight the trade-offs associated with different levels in the internationalization context. Based on a unique dataset of 500 SMEs spanning 10 industries, the results reflect the consequences of being “stuck in the middle” with respect to their strategic posture on innovativeness and proactiveness, but reveal a nuanced role for risk-taking behavior. The non-uniform and non-linear relationships from the findings contribute to a better understanding of when the individual dimensions of entrepreneurial orientation help or hinder entrepreneurial firms in the internationalization process.


This is a post-print version of an article originally published in Journal of Business Venturing, 2014, Volume 29, Issue 4.


The version of record is available through: Elsevier.


Article embargoed until 7/2017 in compliance with publisher policies.