module specification

MN5005 - Transnational Business Management (2024/25)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2024/25
Module title Transnational Business Management
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 30
School Guildhall School of Business and Law
Total study hours 300
90 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
135 hours Guided independent study
75 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Group Coursework 40%   Group-written report (2000 words) based on a business simulation
Coursework 30%   Individual written report (1500 words) on legal advice to business managers
Oral Examination 30%   Individual oral interview (20 minutes) on business lobbying
Running in 2024/25

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
No instances running in the year

Module summary

The module primarily explores the decision-making process behind the organisation and management of operations and resources typically scattered around the globe.
A simulation provides a hands-on experience of formulating decisions informed by applying knowledge of international business theory and management tools, to develop successful strategies for entering international markets and managing business operations there.
While the balance of geopolitical influences is tilting and the role and intervention of global institutions are being challenged (e.g. in the context of Brexit), the business community still sees major economic groupings like Europe’s single market as useful launch pads to internationalisation. The module examines the European Union (EU) policy-making processes and relevant legal principles that govern how businesses operate and manage their supply chains within the Union market and beyond.
Finally, the module explores the participation of business in international lobbying and civil society at the heart of the EU institutions (thereby fulfilling an essential feedback role in policy-making).
Thus, the student can reflect critically on what makes an effective international business manager: in analysing and processing data for making commercial decisions; in interpreting changes in the regulatory and geopolitical environments to review their strategies; in managing information flows for securing competitive advantage, innovation and value-creation.

Prior learning requirements

Level 4 of Business Management or International Business Management


The module’s syllabus is structured around main themes that build an understanding of transnational business management:

• International trade and investment – push and pull factors of globalisation, business opportunities in emerging markets; management response – flexibility and responsiveness of the organisation LO1
• Economic integration through liberalisation of trade and trans-border movements – driving internationalisation of firms and the creation of trading blocs LO1
• Understanding Europe’s special situation in the development and management of transnational business – historical, legal, institutional, economic and political development of the single European market LO1,LO2
• Europe’s single market and beyond: a launch pad for globalising firms – developing world standards, global competition, global competitiveness, practical applications and solutions of EU law to transnational business management problems LO1,LO2,LO3
• The management of supply chains internationally – issues, models and practices LO1,LO2,LO3

Indicative content below will enable the achievement of the learning outcomes:
• Issues in international trade, economic development in the world today LO1
• Challenges of globalisation to business, government and societies – the responses of firms, governments and international institutions LO1
• Principles, purposes and practices in economic integration around the world – the special case of Europe, and beyond LO1
• Key elements of the single European market (SEM), such as harmonisation and competition. The challenges of harmonisation and integration in the single market; and impacts on European firms, industries and markets LO1,LO2,LO3
• Global supply chain management and the value-chain: international, multinational and transnational management of business operations – strategic and operational implications for management LO1,LO2
• Key sources of EU law governing transnational business management; key principles of EU law: Supremacy, Direct Effect, Indirect Effect, and State Liability LO2
• Free movement of goods within the EU (tariffs, non-tariffs and tax barriers); free movement of persons within the EU (EU citizens, workers and derivative rights of their families); freedom to provide services and right of establishment; rights of self-employed, recognition of qualifications, rights of providers and recipients of services LO2
• EU institutions and policy-making: their role in creating the single European market, and the impact of specific policies on competition ad matters related to social, regional and industrial competitiveness for firms and consumers, especially in the context of globalisation – EU legal measures ensuring that competition is not distorted within the Union market: anti-competitive behaviour by cartel, abuse of a dominant position, merger control; equal treatment of various groups of EU workers; EU consumer protection laws LO2,LO3
• EU Lobbying – Europeanisation of the business environment and the importance of institutional opportunity networks in framing EU decision- and policy-making; role of lobbyists at national, EU and international levels; role of the European Economic and Social Committee; the importance of developing lobbying strategy LO3

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Teaching is delivered through a distributive blended learning model using the BlackBoard / Weblearn Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) to explore themes and identify issues typical of transnational business.
Weekly class contact is 3 hours, i.e. only 30 per cent of the total module learning hours. Classes comprise of a 1-hour lecture and a 2-hour tutorial.
Lectures are released gradually through the VLE to convey the key principles and themes from which specific questions will emerge. Extensive additional resources are also embedded in the VLE which students can access at any time and which they will utilise during class contact time to work both collaboratively and individually.

Students are expected to spend at least 1-2 hours on top of each weekly contact hour on self-directed and collaborative work (reading, discussions and own/group research, and assessment). Tutorials will provide the base from which this work can start and build. At each weekly class students will receive ‘Home Study’ questions to help them prepare for the next class. Tutors will emphasize the importance of good work ethic throughout: students will be able to make the most of the time in class only if they go through the material (articles, texts, case study, video and so on) before class and look at the suggested questions themselves before the group meets. This way they will be much more benefit to others as they make their contributions during the discussion, and get more out of each session personally. There will be enough time to discuss questions and issues arising from their own study.
The case study approach, a major feature of Business and Management education (Preston J, [ed], 1993, p.6) will help students work out the practical applications of theoretical principles in a variety of contexts. Case studies will encourage them to develop collaborative and self-directed learning skills.

Students will also be researching and exploring organisations facing special challenges as they become international and evolve among global industries. The aim here is to develop their sense of observation, understanding and critical evaluation of international business processes and practices. Visiting speakers may present more in-depth topics to help them appreciate the far-reaching consequences of globalisation for economies and societies.

The assessment is designed to build student confidence through exercises for which they will receive formative feedback before completing assignments that will count towards the final grade.

The module’s teaching and learning strategy was designed to develop the following set of skills: academic reading; academic writing; evaluating sources; problem solving and application; critical thinking and analysis; communication - interpersonal working with others; self-assessment and reflection, career management.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, students will be able to:
• Identify the key success factors for entering international markets, and organising, managing and controlling activities around the world (LO1)
• Distinguish areas of EU law relevant to transnational business management situations, to produce solutions to problems arising (LO2)
• Demonstrate competent gathering of intelligence to exploit institutional opportunity networks at EU level for interest representation, participation in policy-making, and sustainable competitiveness (LO3)


BUSINESS Core Texts:

Cavusgil S T, Knight G and Riesenberger J R (2017) International Business: The New Realities, Pearson Education, UK: Harlow

Buckley P J, Enderwick, P and Cross, A R (2018) International Business, Oxford University Press, UK: Oxford

Additional reading:

Bartlett C A and Beamish P W (7th edition, 2014) Transnational Management – Texts, Cases and Readings in Cross-Border Management, McGraw-Hill, UK: London.

Frankopan P (2016) The Silk Roads – a New History of the World, UK: London, Bloomsbury

Suder, G (2008) Doing Business in Europe, Sage, UK: London

Key Portals for Business/Law: content also useful in other modules and for career planning/development – free – internal and external links to other portals - free – European Court of Justice - law case finder – free access and subscription (weekly news) – free access and subscription (data, publications) – free access (updates and data on trade agreements) – free access (see also:  - free access – free – forum with reports, videos, analysis

Databases and online resources (available from the Library):
• For company, country information and market research: Business Source Ultimate; Passport
• E-journals: Academic Search Complete; Emerald Management; Henry Stewart Marketing and Management – examples: European Management Review journal, European Management journal
• Special collections: the Trades Union Congress Library collections (re: Employment Law, Industrial Relations)


Fairhurst J, Law of the European Union, Pearson Education Ltd, UK: Harlow

Supplementary reading (latest editions of):

Barnard C The Substantive Law of the EU: the four freedoms, UK: Oxford, Oxford University Press

Berry E, Homewood M J & Bogusz B, EU Law, Text, Cases and Materials, UK: Oxford, Oxford University Press

Conway, G. EU Law, Routledge, UK: London

Foster N EU Law, Oxford University Press, UK : Oxford  - (or latest edition)

Foster N EU Law Directions, Oxford University Press, UK : Oxford

Horspool M European Union Law, Oxford University Press, UK: Oxford

Kaczorowska A European Union Law, Routledge, UK: London

Steiner, J. and Woods, L. EU Law, Oxford University Press, UK: Oxford

Relevant law journals are available from the library (hardcopies) and on-line library resources (e.g. Lexis Library and WestLaw)