Research Guidelines

The Creating Emerging Markets project provides a unique and freely accessible resource for scholars and researchers. In his Oral History in Latin America (2017), David Carey has described the project as “an impressive model for multilingual collections.”

We encourage use of the CEM interviews to support a diverse array of research projects and questions. For academic works, we ask that you credit CEM using the citations provided on the cover page of the transcripts. In order to further HBS support and funding for this public goods project, it would be great if you let us know when you cite interviews in published works by sending a brief email to

Here, we feature a few examples of thematic and comparative research questions that CEM interviews can help answer:

Thematic Research

The CEM interviews are tagged by subjects which feature particularly prominently in each interview, although all interviews range over many different topics. Reviewing these subject tags and some of the corresponding interviews can be a good way to begin a thematic research project. Research questions might include:

  • How do entrepreneurs in emerging markets build world-class brands?
  • Why and how do entrepreneurs in emerging markets think about 'going global'? Are the motivating factors for them different than for business leaders in more developed markets?
  • How does corruption manifest itself in emerging markets? What are some ways that business leaders have dealt with this phenomenon?
  • How do business leaders in emerging markets view corporate social responsibility? Are there general trends, or regional variances? Are these views notably different from perceptions of corporate social responsibility in more developed markets?

In this video, Professors Tarun Khanna and Geoffrey Jones discuss a thematic paper using CEM data, published in the Strategic Management Journal in 2017:

Comparative Research

Because the CEM archive spans many countries, regions, and industries, it enables comparative research on the evolution of business in emerging markets over recent decades. For example:

  • What similarities and differences may be observed between entrepreneurs in the financial services industry in South Asia, Africa and Latin America? What do such observations indicate about the respective market environments?
  • How did business leaders in India, Chile and the Gulf respond to the liberalization of regulation in their respective countries? What challenges did liberalization present, and what opportunities did it provide?
  • Why did large diversified business groups flourish throughout Asia, Latin America and the Middle East?

Published Materials

The interviews from the CEM archive have been the basis for scholarly articles, book chapters, conference papers, and graduate level research. We update the list regularly to highlight the breadth of research avenues that CEM interviews support.

See publications