Influence of innovativeness, environmental competitiveness and government, industry and professional networks on SME export likelihood

Frances Y. M. Chang*, Cynthia M. Webster

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)


The purpose of this study is to examine how small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in different industry segments utilize government, industry, and professional networks and to test the influence of SME innovativeness, environmental competitiveness and network type for SME export likelihood. Previous studies on networks and exports tend to be qualitative and based on small samples. This study adds to previous scholarship by investigating a large database consisting of 2,263 Australian SMEs. Results indicate SME innovativeness contributes positively to export likelihood while contrary to extant studies, no significant relationship is observed between environmental competitiveness and export likelihood. Moreover, a significant, positive relationship exists between government networks and export likelihood, and a positive though weaker relationship between industry networks and export likelihood. On average, the likelihood of SMEs receiving export income increases by 47 percent if all three network types are accessed between one and three times a year, controlling for other factors. Further analyses of industry sub-segments indicate a stronger relationship between industry networks and export likelihood.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1304-1327
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Small Business Management
Issue number4
Early online date9 Aug 2018
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019


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