What are your current passions and interests?

Introduces two recent papers and my current passions: Equality Diversity and Inclusion and the Positive Academia movement

My paper The persistent myth of high expatriate failure rates was first-ranked in the WAIB top-20 on research in global careers. I was therefore interviewed by Saba Colakoglu and Ha Nguyen, who came up with some great questions. This blogpost covers their fourth question which deals with the projects I am currently working on.

What are some exciting projects you are working on now?

Recently I have had two articles accepted that I see as the natural culmination of my research on global mobility. One is published Organization Studies and is co-authored with Hyun-Jung Lee and Katsu Yoshikawa. In that article, we provided a fresh look at country-of-origin effects in international staffing. We questioned whether an “ethnocentric” home country culture - the predominant explanation for PCN staffing policies in the cross-cultural management literature - is sufficient to explain this practice. It combined primary data from my own earlier research with secondary data from a large variety of sources to measure cultural and institutional contexts and applied Qualitative Comparative Analysis, which I think is a really interesting analytical technique for small sample sizes.

  • Lee, H.-J., Yoshikawa, K. Harzing, A.W. (2022) Culture and Institutions: Dispositional and contextual explanations for country-of-origin effects in MNC “ethnocentric” staffing practicesOrganization Studies, vol. 43, no. 4, pp. 497–519. Available online... - Publisher's version (free access) - Related blog post - Short video

Another is forthcoming in JIBS and was co-authored with Heejin Kim, who visited me for a year at Middlesex University just before the pandemic, and Sebastian Reiche, my former PhD student at the University of Melbourne, now a full professor at IESE. Through a qualitative case study of Japanese MNCs, we demonstrated the process through which inpatriates’ knowledge transfer contributes to subsidiary capability building and subsidiary evolution over time, and explain why successive inpatriation is critical to enhance subsidiary performance. We hope this will really put inpatriation on the map as a strategic staffing choice.

  • Kim, H.; Reiche, B.S.; Harzing, A.W. (2022) How does successive inpatriation contribute to subsidiary capability building and subsidiary evolution? An organizational knowledge creation perspective, Journal of International Business Studies, vol. 53, no. 7, pp. 1394-1419. Available online... Publisher's version (free access) - Related blog post - Short video

Why IHRM research needs to change

Beyond that, I am not doing much research in global mobility these days. In fact, I gave a seminar called “Dare to be Different. Why (IHRM) Research needs to change”, where I gave an overview of several areas in which I think global mobility research really needs to change if it wants to stay relevant: broadening our population, improving our theoretical grounding, taking interdisciplinarity seriously, using research methods beyond surveys and interviews, and focusing on research topics to address grand societal challenges. More generally encouraged researchers to dare to be different and critical. I have linked this video as well as some 20 others on International HRM on a separate video resources page on my website.

Female academics, CYGNA, and Positive Academia

Currently, I am not doing that much academic research at all, preferring to focus on helping junior academics with their papers rather than publishing much myself. The research work I still do is mostly in the areas of equality, diversity, and inclusion, and inclusive research cultures, with a focus on female academics. But most of this is applied research through my role at Middlesex University as Research Mentor and Staff Development Lead and the CYGNA women in academia network. So, what I do is I read a lot about research in these fields and try to iteratively develop initiatives that can help creating supportive, collaborative, and inclusive research cultures. I have presented about this at two academic training courses in March 2022, one for Research Deans on Building Inclusive Cultures and one for Deans of Faculty on Supporting ECRs.

More generally, I try to spend my scarce time to be a force for good in academia. In 2022, I have launched the #PositiveAcademia initiative in which I share LinkedIn recommendations for colleagues, mentees, co-authors, and others I admire. I started writing these over the Christmas break and haven’t stopped, I have about 50 now and am planning to write many more. Little gestures like can really make a big difference to academics in your network. So, for anyone listening please do join me and take this small step to support an academic colleague. Even if we all write just one recommendation for someone else, we can collectively make academia a much nicer place.

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