A3 Book section, Chapters in research books
Motivation behind alternative growth modes in SMEs : a systematic literature review (2023)

Hakola, D., & Sarna, B. (2023). Motivation behind alternative growth modes in SMEs : a systematic literature review. In M. Xheneti, S. Costa, J. Heinonen, & A. Kurczewska (Eds.), Contextual Embeddedness of Entrepreneurship (pp. 107-127). Edward Elgar. https://doi.org/10.4337/9781035320684.00015

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editorsHakola, Daria; Sarna, Bhavesh

Parent publicationContextual Embeddedness of Entrepreneurship

Parent publication editorsXheneti, Mirela; Costa, Sílvia; Heinonen, Jarna; Kurczewska, Agnieszka



Publication year2023

Publication date04/08/2023

Pages range107-127

PublisherEdward Elgar

Place of PublicationCheltenham

Publication countryUnited Kingdom

Publication languageEnglish


Publication open accessNot open

Publication channel open access

Publication is parallel published (JYX)https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/88916


The topic of firm growth has received attention from numerous scholars in the entrepreneurship and strategic management research. Yet knowledge about small firm growth remains fragmented and inconclusive. Related studies hold common predispositions which do not equally consider companies of different sizes and the diversity of growth modes. In this systematic literature review we address these shortcomings and present findings on the antecedents of growth mode decisions in small- and medium-sized enterprises. We conduct a systematic analysis of empirical studies to present an integrative framework of the major motives behind internal, external, and hybrid growth modes in small firms. This study is a starting point for further in-depth discussions on small firm growth. We contribute by answering the call for a systematic understanding of firm growth particularly in the context of smaller organizations, and by proposing directions for further research on the topic.

Keywordssmall and medium-sized enterprisesgrowth companiessystematic reviews

Free keywordsgrowth; SMEs; organic; acquisitive; hybrid; systematic literature review

Contributing organizations

Ministry reportingYes

Reporting Year2023

Preliminary JUFO rating2

Last updated on 2024-03-04 at 17:05