3 ECTS credits
75 h study time

Offer 1 with catalog number 8020288GNR for all students in the 1st semester at a (G) Postgraduate - preliminary level.

1st semester
Enrollment based on exam contract
Grading method
Grading (scale from 0 to 20)
Can retake in second session
Taught in
Faculty of Economic & Social Sciences & Solvay BS
ES Academische eenheid
Educational team
Decaan ES (course titular)
Activities and contact hours
15 contact hours Lecture
Course Content



A good understanding of how enterprises operate cross-border and how they proceed in establishing alliances gives policy makers a valuable background for leveraging technology development and attracting foreign investments in their countries.


The course’s unique feature is its practical approach and framework directly useable for (future) entrepreneurs to create successful strategic alliances and joint ventures. All the steps are explained in detail and illustrated with examples, from the early stage through the pre-negotiation stage to the tactics and techniques of negotiating the deal, with particular attention to the human factor.


Part I: Business development in international context

  • Globalisation and market entry strategies
  • Drivers of changing strategies and implications
  • Development openings for countries


Part II: Creating strategic alliances and joint ventures

  • Introduction: definitions; forms of alliances; key drivers for creation; required skills; critical success factors; process overview
  • Organisation strategy: value creation; internal and external analysis; mission and vision; gap analysis; strategy definition
  • Partner selection: the ideal partner profile; from long list to short list; screening and fit analysis; analysis of potential profits and risks; preparation for cultural differences; preliminary contacts; non-disclosure agreement, memorandum of understanding
  • Implementation process: executive management and team considerations in international context; planning; equilibrium rule; negotiation process: economic dependencies, autonomy, control, governance, organisation; partnership agreement
  • Managing the alliance: evaluation criteria; follow-up requirements; coping with changes in strategy
Course material
Digital course material (Required) : Powerpoint-syllabus, checklists and contract examples
Additional info

Study material


Before the start of the lecture a Powerpoint-syllabus, checklists and contract examples will be handed over to the students.

Learning Outcomes

General Competences

Learning objectives


What drives multinational (MNE’s) as well as medium and small enterprises (SME’s) to build various kinds of international alliances? What are the enabling factors and what are the barriers encountered? But above all, how does an enterprise succeed in establishing a successful alliance? This course offers a practical framework for creating international alliances, hands practical tips and discusses the classic pitfalls. Beyond mere theory, this course is especially relevant to (future) entrepreneurs wanting to strengthen their growth through the creation of alliances.


By the end of the course, the participants should be able to:

  • use a framework for designing, structuring and managing international alliances
  • understand strategies and structures of alliances
  • master the process of creating international alliances
  • avoid the pitfalls, know the success factors


The final grade is composed based on the following categories:
Written Exam determines 100% of the final mark.

Within the Written Exam category, the following assignments need to be completed:

  • written exam with a relative weight of 100 which comprises 100% of the final mark.

Additional info regarding evaluation


Allowed unsatisfactory mark
The supplementary Teaching and Examination Regulations of your faculty stipulate whether an allowed unsatisfactory mark for this programme unit is permitted.

Academic context

This offer is part of the following study plans:
Postgraduate Certificate International Trade and Investment: Standaard traject
Postgraduate Certificate Flagship Programme in Economic Diplomacy and International Business: Standaard traject