for a special issue of the
Journal of Global Mobility: The Home of Expatriate Management Research
Paper submission deadline: 30th April 2015
Guest Editors:
Yvonne McNulty, SIM University

Michael Harvey, University of Arizona

Expatriate compensation is often regarded as a key component of effective
international assignment management (Bonache & Fernandez, 1997; Harvey &
Moeller, 2009), yet it has long been a source of frustration for many
multinational companies (MNCs) (Chen, Choi, & Chi, 2002; Foote, 1977;
Harvey, 1993; Suutari & Tornikoski, 2001). Compensating expatriates is
undoubtedly complex, complicated by fluctuating exchange rates, inflation,
challenging locations in emerging markets, variable income tax rates, and a
range of new compensation practices (Dwyer, 1999; Phillips & Fox, 2003). A
survey by Ernst & Young (2010) found that 67 percent of mobility managers
report ³compensation packages² as the biggest area where international
assignee expectations are not met. Yet prior research suggests that
expatriates do not seek or accept international assignments purely for
financial reasons (Borstorff, Harris, Feild, & Giles, 1997; Dickmann,
Doherty, Mills, & Brewster, 2008). Indeed, there is compelling evidence that
expatriates have many non-financial reasons for engaging in global mobility,
with career enhancement and progression, seeking a personal or family
adventure, and fulfilling a lifelong dream among them (Hippler, 2009; Selmer
& Lauring, 2012). Why then is expatriate compensation such a challenge?
A successful compensation strategy involves keeping expatriates motivated
while maintaining a competitive advantage through the meeting of MNC
corporate goals and budgets (Latta, 1998; Morris, Clark, & Pennings, 1997).
There is also the challenge of allaying compensation disparity between
expatriates and local employees, which has been identified as a key
determinant of dissatisfaction and lower morale among host-country nationals
(HCNs) that work directly with international assignees (Leung, Wang, & Hon,
2011). Moreover, the fierce competition for foreign talent has caused issues
in executive compensation (Carpenter, Sanders, & Gregersen, 2001), not
because it is driving salaries up as one would logically expect, but because
it is driving salaries down. Consider, for example, that globalmobility
bears considerable costs that are prohibitive for many companies, the
response to which is to engage in cost-cutting. Whereas in years gone by,
MNCs used Œrich¹ compensation packages to create a ³home away from home² as
an incentive to relocate (predominantly the balance sheet or full package
approach; see Sims & Schraeder, 2005 for an overview), the availability of
more expatriates willing to accept reduced packages such as local-plus and
to localise in the host-country has caused a decline in the need for
home-country compensation approaches (McNulty & Aldred, 2013), particularly
in Asia (Diez & Vierra, 2013; ORC Worldwide, 2008). Local-plus is an
approach in which expatriate employees are paid according to the salary
levels, structure, and administration guidelines of the host location, as
well as being provided, in recognition of the employee¹s foreign status,
with special expatriate benefits such as transportation, housing, and the
costs of dependents¹ education. It is worth noting that not all expatriates
on local-plus receive the full range of additional benefits, these being at
the discretion of the employing organization and largely determined by the
location of the assignment (e.g. hardship versus non-hardship location),
among other factors(Stanley, 2009). Thus, while the traditional reasons for
needing expatriates (e.g. knowledge and skills transfer, global control and
culture, career development) remain valid, more localised and local-plus
expatriates now have a level of managerial talent that they can often
compete for jobs with ³full package² expatriates.
But, there are opportunity costs associated with expatriate compensation as
a result of these new approaches: changes in the assignee profile in terms
of the types of employees that are willing to engage in global mobility
(McNulty & Aldred, 2013); increases in turnover when expatriates leave their
job during an assignment and join a competitor (Brookfield Global Relocation
Services, 2013); and an increasing number of third-country nationals and
self-initiated expatriates that are willing to accept localized employment,
thereby reducing MNCs¹ reliance on parent-country nationals. Yet, our
understanding of these issues is scant, with only a limited number of
studies exploring, for example, global versus expatriate compensation
approaches (e.g., Gomez-Mejia & Welbourne, 1991; Salimaki & Heneman, 2008),
and few studies of an empirical nature (e.g., Harvey, 1993; Leung et al.,
2011; Lowe, Milliman, De Cieri, & Dowling, 2002; Stone, 1995; Welch, 1994).
In this special issue, we provide a platform for new approaches to
expatriation compensation with a view to extending the very limited
knowledge about this under-researched and under-developed, yet highly
relevant, topic. We invite submissions focused on any of the following
themes, noting this is not an exhaustive list and other topics are welcome:
·         What are new approaches to expatriate compensation? What are the
drivers for their implementation?

·         How important is expatriate compensation to expatriates? What are
the ³hygienic² versus ³motivator² factors pertaining to expatriate
compensation? What is really ³important² to (a) MNCs, and (b) expatriates?

·         What are the implications of the rapid increase in ³local-plus²
and other host-based packages such as localization? In what regions of the
world are these compensation approaches taking hold, and why?

·         How can managers deal with expatriates¹ compensation concerns and
develop packages that motivate and reward for optimum return in terms of
ROI, assignee satisfaction, and global performance success?

·         What are the advantages and disadvantages of traditional versus
new approaches to expatriate compensation?

·         How should the various types of assignees be compensated (i.e.,
PCNs, TCNs, SIEs, among others)? What are the implications arising from
differences in compensation approaches among different types of assignees?

·         To what extent are changes to compensation and the process through
which companies manage compensation as important as the remuneration itself?

·         What implications arise when expatriates are transitioned from
³legacy² (i.e., initially deployed) compensation plans to new approaches?

·         Should compensation approaches be different for male versus female
expatriates?  For parent country nationals versus third country nationals?
For traditional versus non-traditional expatriates? For inter-regional
versus intra-regional assignees?

·         How do expatriate compensation policies and practices affect host
country nationals?

·         When expatriates receive reduced compensation packages such as
local-plus, do career benefits as a form of non-financial compensation
mitigate salary losses?


Submission Process and Timeline
To be considered for the special issue, manuscripts must be submitted no
later than 30 April 2015. 5.00pm Eastern Standard Time. Papers may be
submitted prior to this deadline as well. We welcome quantitative,
qualitative (including case studies) and conceptual papers that provide
unique insights into expatriate compensation and its practice. Findings
and/or conceptualizations should have theoretical and policy implications,
and seek to inform management practice. The editors of the Special Issue
will be pleased to discuss initial ideas for papers via email.
Submitted papers must be based on original material not under consideration
by any other journal or publishing outlet. The editors will select up to 5
papers to be included in the special issue, but other submissions may be
considered for other issues of the journal. All papers will be subject to a
double-blind peer review in accordance with the journal guidelines and will
be evaluated by at least two reviewers and a special issue editor. The final
acceptance is dependent on the review team¹s judgments of the paper¹s
contribution on four key dimensions:
1.      Theoretical contribution: Does the article offer novel and
innovative insights or meaningfully extend existing theory in the field of
global mobility?

2.      Empirical contribution: Does the article offer novel findings and
are the research design, data analysis, and results rigorous and appropriate
in testing the hypotheses or research questions?

3.      Practical contribution: Does the article contribute to the improved
management of global mobility?

4.      Contribution to the special issue topic.


Authors should prepare their manuscripts for blind review according to the
Journal of Global Mobility author guidelines, available at Please remove any information that may
potentially reveal the identity of the authors to the reviewers. Manuscripts
should be submitted electronically at:
<> . Authors should select the special
issue title New Perspectives on Expatriate Compensation from the drop down
For enquiries regarding the special issue please contact either of the two
Guest Editors, Yvonne McNulty at [log in to unmask]
<mailto:[log in to unmask]>  or Michael Harvey at
[log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]> .
Bonache, J., & Fernandez, Z. 1997. Expatriate compensation and its link to
the subsidiary strategic role: A theoretical analysis. International Journal
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Borstorff, P., Harris, S., Feild, H., & Giles, W. 1997. Who'll go? A review
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Yvonne McNulty
SIM University

Michael Harvey
University of Arizona

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