Course description

Title of the Teaching Unit

International Trade and Innovation

Code of the Teaching Unit


Academic year

2023 - 2024


Number of credits


Number of hours







Teaching language


Teacher in charge


Objectives and contribution to the program

The fast evolving trade environment as well as the Covid outbreak create new challenges and some opportunities, such as the continuous feed of the global supply chain, sustainability, expanded markets and new partnerships. They also cause higher risk, major changes in international business strategies including market diversification as well as disruptive innovation strategies and blooming digitalisation, while national labour legislation and social issues have come to be more complex and diversified.

This course provides a better understanding of the new challenges that European firms encounter in terms of international competitiveness, market penetration and key innovation practices, in particular with emerging economic giants. It is dedicated to develop a prospective approach to changes in world trade and to enable future managers to grasp the complexities of emerging economies and the new challenges European firms are facing in world trade. In this context, innovation is considered an essential and substantial strategy to compete internationally.

Objectives in terms of knowledge
- Explain major trends of world trade and outline the increasing role of BRICS economies
- Explain the market opportunities and business challenges to cope with the BRICS group
- Describe and explain the opportunities and the business challenges of the EU27 (plus the United Kingdom) market
- Outline the strategic alliances of international firms while dealing with emerging markets

Objectives in terms of know-how
- Link practice and theory to understand the dynamics of international activities of firms
- Ability to find and to collect relevant data and information about emerging and more industrialised markets for an effective market research at international level

Objectives in terms of knowledge
- Describe major grounds of innovation as a competitive advantage in the international market place
- Present the taxonomy of innovation, innovation processes and risks of innovation

Objectives in terms of know-how
- Link practice and theory
- Capability to present an analytical and critical thinking about innovation practices

Competency Goals :

CG 1 Disciplinary Knowledge
CG2 Operational
CG4 Open to the world
CG5 Aware of complexity / Critical Mind
CG6 Communicate orally and in writing in several languages

Prerequisites and corequisites

- Corporate Strategy
- Introduction to International Economics


- Composition and Flows of Global Trade, BRICs and EU Economies with Some Benchmarks
- FDI, Theory of Multinational Corporations and The Standard Trade Model
- The UK Economy and the Brexit
- Economies of Scale and Monopolistic Competition
- Instruments of Trade Policy
- Dumping and Trade Liberalization
- Innovation as Firm Strategy for Higher Economic Performance in Tougher Competition Setting
- Blockchain and Digital Currency
- Firm Size, Distance to the Technology Frontier and R&D Cooperation
- Expert lectures series (from the European Commission, Deloitte, …)

Teaching methods

Online lectures and interactive discussions in the virtual class room supported by these lectures, readings, and expert lecture series?

Assessment method

- Class attendance and participation
- Final written examination or paper (according to the evolution of the Covid outbreak)

Calculation method

For the ICHEC department, where a teaching unit (UE) comprises several learning activities (AA), the overall grade for the UE is calculated as follows:
- If all the scores obtained for the different learning activities are greater than or equal to 10/20, the overall score will be the weighted arithmetic mean (based on the relative importance of each of the AAs in the UE) of these scores.
- If at least one of the scores obtained for an AA is less than 10/20, the overall score will then be the weighted geometric mean of the AA scores.
These modes of calculation apply when a Teaching Unit consists of several learning activities.


- Course slides
- Expert lecture series
- Textbook by Krugman et Al
See also the pedagogical document