For this assignment, choose a peer-reviewed article to review from the databases in the school Online Library. Find an article about international human resource management (IHRM) that is of interest to you and covers the multinational manager training topics from this unit. The article you choose must be at least two pages in length and be written within the last five years. Write a two-page review of the article that includes the following information.
- Briefly introduce and summarize the article.
- Identify the author’s main points.
- Who is the author’s intended audience?
- Discuss the corporate cultural elements addressed in the article as they pertain to training multinational managers. Is enough being done in this area to properly train multinational managers?
- Identify legal concerns that may exist for IHRM in training multinational managers.
- Does the information from the article support the information in your textbook, or are there differences?
Your completed article review must be at least two pages in length. You are required to use at least two outside sources, one of which must be the article you reviewed. All sources used, including the textbook, must be referenced; paraphrased and quoted material must have accompanying APA citations.
THE InTErnaTIonal Journal of Human rEsourcE managEmEnT, 2018
Vol. 29, no. 7, 1365–1373
CALL FOR PAPERS
International Journal of Human Resource Management
(IJHRM) Special Issue on: International human resource
management in contexts of high uncertainties
Geoffrey Wooda, Fang Lee Cookeb, Mehmet Demirbaga and Caleb Kwonga
auniversity of Essex, southend and colchester, Essex, uK; bmonash university, melbourne, australia
International human resource management in contexts of high
The aim of this special issue is to examine more closely of the implementations of
international human resource management (IHRM) practices in the contexts of
high uncertainties. It seeks Contexts of relevance encompass those experiencing
financial crisis, economic sanctions, political and civil uncertainty, environmen-
tal collapse and/or deep recession. It aims to supplement the Danger and Risk
as Challenges for HRM IJHRM Special Issue which encompasses terrorism, vio-
lent disorder, crime and other physical risks, by focusing on initially seemingly
peaceful forms of uncertainty, even if their consequences might lead to societal
collapse. While appreciating that these contexts are very different, the key theme
that cuts across all of these contexts are the unexpected changes that they brought,
creating considerable ambiguity for businesses, and how they manage their people.
Businesses will face the challenges of coping in such contexts, with unpredict-
ability in demand, and in supplier relations, in adding greater time pressure to
the decision-making process, and in terms of work and employment relations
(Pearson and Clair, 1998). Through operating in different settings, multinational
enterprises (MNEs) may be able to hedge risk, but at the same time protecting
their own interest from a distance can be extremely difficult (Cantwell, Dunning,
& Lundan, 2010). They will also impact on MNE decisions to invest and reinvest
in particular settings (Oh & Oetzel, 2011). However, reducing or eliminating
their presence in the host location is not always possible. MNEs may have sub-
stantial resources and infrastructural interests in the host location that need to
be protected. Again, there is often a pressing need of MNEs to use expatriates on
international assignments to complete strategically critical tasks, but the same
time managing expatriate staff becomes much more difficult when countries of
domicile become more unstable. However, these situations often present golden
© 2018 Informa uK limited, trading as Taylor & francis group
CONTACT mehmet Demirbag email@example.com
1366 G. WOOD ET AL.
opportunity for businesses. Studies have found that the option value of MNEs
in entering a country under the uncertain conditions can be high (Miller, 1998).
This is because government and international bodies often inject considerable
amount of investments into the affected countries in aiding the recovery and
rebuilding process and, in turn, pumped up the local aggregate demands, opening
new opportunities for MNEs in relevant industries (Vigdor, 2008). At the same
time, consumers’ demand for products and services may change; demand may
not necessarily decline, but what consumers may want may be different, and this
will impact on the demands placed on a firm’s human resources. These MNEs
may therefore experience expansion of workforce under these situations. There
are multinational organisations, such as inter-governmental agencies as well as
international relief organisations, who would purposefully be sending staff into
countries experiencing crises.
MNEs are being noted for their often superior ability to implement highly
tactical, more robust talent management practices, including work-based, HRM-
led and international systems, in line with the rest of their worldwide operations
(Glaister, Karacay, Demirbag, & Tatoglu, 2018; Hartmann, Feisel, & Schober,
2010; Mellahi, Demirbag, Collings, Tatoglu, & Hughes, 2013; Tatoglu, Glaister,
& Demirbag, 2016; Demirbag, Tatoglu & Wilkinson, 2016). However, with the
environment suddenly becoming much more precarious, MNEs may be likely to
operate on a much more restricted budget towards their human resources, and
move towards leaner staffing. This could mean retrenchment and the cutting back
pay as well as other compensations and supports, which makes the implementa-
tion of a strong IHRM programme difficult. At the same time, uncertain contexts
increase the need for subsidiary control, which, according to previous literature,
require a more locally responsive HRM practices that are sensitive to the local
condition may also be needed (Mellahi et al., 2013). Furthermore, in the context of
systemic shock such as an economic crisis, the relative position of owners of highly
fungible capital could increase (Wood, 2013). This would include MNEs, who are
often uncommitted and switch to another country when presented with better
opportunities. Thus, with their strong bargaining power, coupled with the dete-
rioration of economic conditions, the relative power of the employees, including
expatriates, could be significantly diminished (Wilkinson & Wood, 2017). Streeck
(2009) presents a highly pessimistic view that this could mean the worsening of
employment conditions, including the reduction of not only pay and benefits, but
also job security and workplace democracy. Others, however, point to the resilience
of institutions in upholding pre-existing rights for the workers (Thelen, 2014).
From the employees’ point of view, there is an emerging consensus that going
through expatriation is an emotional journey (Bozionelos, 2009; Herman &
Tetrick, 2009; Selmer, 2001, 2002; Stahl & Caligiuri, 2005). Such emotion can
be manifested in positive ways, such as excitement, optimism, hope and passion
(Youssef & Luthans, 2007), which could be facilitative to the expatriate’s ability to
settle, but there are also negative emotions, such as fear, worry, anxiety, doubt and
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT 1367
grief (Jordan & Cartwright, 1998), that could potentially cause disengagement,
detachment, resulting in a demotivated and disgruntled expatriate, the spill-over
effect of which could be so strong that potentially it could affect the overall organ-
isational performance and reputation (Richardson & McKenna, 2002). Negative
emotions such as those mentioned above are most likely to manifest in the situa-
tion of rapid change and uncertainties (Lerner & Keltner, 2001). Therefore, expa-
triation that are poorly thought out could lead to failed assignments, premature
return of expatriates and the loss of their returned expatriates (Takeuchi, Wang,
Marinova, & Yao, 2009). Failed expatriation has the potential not only derailing
the MNEs’ performance and capabilities, but also that their corporate reputation
in the international arena could suffer.
There is a strong role that organisation can play in managing the process of
employee’s resilience development in the face of disruptive events (Coutu, 2002;
Luthans, 2002a, 2002b). Drawing on psychological theories including Bandura’s
(1982) work on self-efficacy, as well as Seligman’s (2002) work on learned opti-
mism, studies in the more conventional domestic context have suggested that
individuals have very different mechanisms in handling unexpected challenges
(Gray, 1987), or anything in between. Luthans (2002a, 2002b) have found that it is
those with strong psychological strength who are more able to cope successfully
in the face of significant adversity or risk, and to take up responsibilities and
bounce back from such situations. Such findings have serious IHRM implications
in terms of recruitment, training and supports. It implies that MNEs would need
to develop a rigorous selection process involving the considerations of certain
traits and capabilities that are most likely to reflect on an expatriate’s level of
resilience when arrived in the host location. At the same time, it points to the
importance for MNEs to offer relevant organisational training and supports (c.f.
Despite this, research on unstable and unpredictable contexts on business
and HRM remain relatively scarce and scattered across disciplines (Oh & Oetzel,
2011). In particular, whilst the specificities of these contexts have been explored
through the literature of disaster and crisis management (Boin & Lagadec, 2000;
Pearson & Mitroff, 1993; Quarantelli, 1988; Ritchie, 2004), from the operational
side through the literature on global project and supply chain management (Lin
Moe & Pathranarakul, 2006; Richey, 2009; Van Wassenhove, 2006), public relations
and communication (Guth, 1995; Jaques, 2007; Regester & Larkin, 2008), manag-
ing customers’ flows and expectations (Elliott, Harris, & Baron, 2005; Oloruntoba
& Gray, 2009), the people management side of crisis and volatility have not been
the research focus. The lack of research on the IHRM issues relating to these crisis,
disasters and conflict is disappointing since there is a growing consensus that the
threat posed by these situations is growing. It is also disappointing because of
the increased acknowledgement that the successful management of international
human resources is a major determinant of success or failure in international
business (Tung, 1984).
1368 G. WOOD ET AL.
As a key journal to the field, the International Journal of Human Resource
Management (IJHRM) has been the leader in terms of investigating how IHRM
is shaped by the contextual specificities. It has published some key articles that
are relevant to this special issue, including Lee and Reade (2015), Jia and Zhang
(2012), Merlot and De Cieri (2012), Zhang, Jia, and Gu (2012), Zagelmeyer,
Heckmann, and Kettner (2012) and Kamoche (2003). This special issue intends
to build on this previous work, by systematically drawing both from existing
theoretical framework of crisis management (Pauchant & Mitroff, 1990), as well
as building new theories through an interdisciplinary approach, drawing from
different fields including but not limited to psychology, sociology, economics,
but also from other business and management disciplines. We envisage that the
papers in the Special Issue will analyse the issues of IHRM in the contexts and
conflict, disaster and crisis from multiple levels: at the individual level concern-
ing the expatriates, host workers and the managers, at a firm level of MNEs in
terms of their performance challenges and support practices that they offered,
at the sectoral level where certain industries and sectors (such as the service
sector) would be more adversely related than others, and, at the macro level, in
considering the policy/regulatory implications. Methodologically, we welcome
submissions utilising a variety of methods, including qualitative, quantitative,
and mixed-method approaches.
Contextually, we welcome submission in relation to different forms of crisis,
disaster and conflict. The following list is not intended to be exhaustive:
• Economic crisis (e.g. financial crises, deep recessions)
• Natural disasters (e.g. floods, hurricanes, drought, tsunamis, earthquakes)
• Political crisis (e.g. rise of extremist populism, constitutional crises
Potential themes to be addressed within the special issue
Against this background, this special issue calls for empirical and theoretical
papers that explore and analyse the IHRM in the contexts of crisis, disaster and
conflict. More specifically, we welcome the following or any other relevant research
• Systematic review of previous literature on the roles of IHRM in the contexts
of crisis – As mentioned, the IHRM literature in this field is largely dis-
jointed and fragmented across disciplines. A review on the scholarly efforts
into the matter would provide a reference point to academics in directing
future research agendas, as well as offering clarity to practitioners looking
for insights into their managerial implications and other practicalities.
• Talent management and HR planning in high uncertainty contexts – How
does systemic crisis, such as economic crisis and social unrests, affect the
HR Planning of expatriate deployment processes? How does this affect
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT 1369
MNEs choice of talents between parent, host and third country nationals?
Does MNEs adopt different talent management strategies compared to
domestic firms in the high uncertainties context? How does the emphasis
on local responsiveness and global integration changes during economic
and political instabilities, and how they affect the HRM practices of MNEs?
• Country of origin effects – Gomes, Sahadev, Glaister, and Demirbag’s (2015)
studies of European and Indian MNEs noted consider home country effect
in their implementations of IHRM practices. We encourage studies both
on firm and individual levels. Questions of interest could include: how the
home and host country effects matter in the high uncertainties context?
How would country of origin effect affect the extent of resources that an
MNE would devote to HR (e.g. training) in a situation of uncertainties?
Do certain cultural traits within the host and home culture of the expatri-
ates more likely to affect the resilience of expatriates, in high uncertainty
• Systemic crisis, bargaining and employee relations – Systemic crisis cre-
ates ‘blind alleys and ruptures’ within the existing economic system
(Hollingsworth, 2006). How do uncertain situations affect the bargain-
ing dynamics between MNEs and their employees? How does this in turn
affects the HRM practices deployed by MNEs?
• Different IHRM responses at the different phases of crisis – Literature sug-
gests that the process of crisis management entails the three main phases
of preparedness, responsiveness, and recovery (Coombs, 2007; Hickman,
1997; Smith & Sipika, 1993). Presumably, at each of the stages multinational
organisations and expatriate may face different challenges and require dif-
ferent forms of supports. We are particularly interested in exploring the
different IHRM practices that MNEs implemented at each of the phases, as
well as the transformation between phases. Studies that examine the inter-
sected implications of gender, nationality, ethnicity, economic/social back-
ground of expatriates, etc. in influencing organisational IHRM practices
would be particularly welcome.
• Organising voluntary, international humanitarian and CSR efforts following
environmental disaster – Voluntary and international humanitarian efforts
often arose as a result of environmental disasters (Merlot & De Cieri, 2012).
The skills, expertise and manpower of expatriates are often considered to be
invaluable for the local community affected. However, formal HR planning
is always going to be difficult due to the unexpectedness and urgency of the
events. Furthermore, many of the deployed expatriates are motivated by
intrinsic rather extrinsic reasons, creating further complications in terms
of turnover and performance management. We welcome contributions that
would further enhance our understanding of the implementations of IHRM
in management expatriation of this kind, as well as other related challenges.
1370 G. WOOD ET AL.
• Sectoral specific IHRM challenges in the context of high uncertainties. High
uncertainty contexts do not affect different sectors uniformly. Some of the
most notably affected ones include the customer-orientated service sectors
such as tourism, hotel and hospitality in the face of disaster and conflict, as
well as banking and finance related sectors in the wake of an economic cri-
sis. Other sectors, informal economies, and underground businesses, some-
times thrive in the context of high uncertainties. We also welcome studies
that examine cross-sectoral differences in terms of assignment patterns,
expatriate motivation, and other IHRM related issues.
Authors should submit an electronic copy of their manuscript as a Word- file
with title page detached to http://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/rijh. The title page
should include the names, titles, professional affiliations and contact information
of the authors. Authors’ names should appear on the title page only. Authors
should refrain from revealing their identity in the body of the manuscript. The
paper will then go through a double-blind review of the paper using similar cri-
teria to those for any paper submitted to IJHRM. For additional guidelines with
respect to formatting and so on, please consult ‘Instructions to Authors’ on the
h t t p : / / w w w. t a n d f o n l i n e . c o m / a c t i o n / a u t h o r S u b m i s s i o n ? j o u r n a l –
Code = rijh20&page = instructions
It is expected that the Special Issue will be published in 2020. Papers should be
formatted in accordance with the IJHRM style. Papers to be considered for this
special issue should be submitted no later than 31 December 2018.
The Guest Editors would be glad to discusss ideeas for papers informally via
e-mail: Geoffrey Wood: firstname.lastname@example.org Fang Lee Cooke: fang.cooke@
monash.edu Mehmet Demirbag: email@example.com Caleb Kwong: ckwong@
Bandura, A. (1982). Self-efficacy Mechanism in Human Agency. American Psychologist, 37(2),
Boin, A., & Lagadec, P. (2000). Preparing for the future: Critical challenges in crisis management.
Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, 8(4), 185–191.
Bozionelos, N. (2009). Expatriation outside the boundaries of the multinational corporation: A
study with expatriate nurses in Saudi Arabia. Human Resource Management, 48(1), 111–134.
Cantwell, J., Dunning, J. H., & Lundan, S. M. (2010). An evolutionary approach to understanding
international business activity: The co-evolution of MNEs and the institutional environment.
Journal of International Business Studies, 41(4), 567–586.
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT 1371
Coombs, W. T. (2007). Protecting organization reputations during a crisis: The development
and application of situational crisis communication theory. Corporate Reputation Review,
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of Services Marketing, 19(5), 336–345.
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Lee, Hyun-Jung, & Reade, Carol (2015). Ethnic homophily perceptions as an emergent
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1372 G. WOOD ET AL.
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