*Call for Papers*

*Human Resource Management*

*Special Issue on Human Resource Management in Multinational Corporations
in and from China *

*Guest Editors: *

*Dr. Mingwei Liu, Associate Professor of Employment Relations, Rutgers
University. **[log in to unmask]* <[log in to unmask]>

*Dr. Chao C. Chen, Professor of Management and Global Business, Rutgers
University **[log in to unmask]* <[log in to unmask]>

*Dr. Fang Lee Cooke, Professor of HRM and Asia Studies, Monash University*

*[log in to unmask]* <[log in to unmask]>

*Dr. Leigh Anne Liu, Associate Professor of International Business, Georgia
State University*

*[log in to unmask]* <[log in to unmask]>

With the country’s forest of factories becoming home to sizable shares of
global manufacturing and Chinese businesses rapidly expanding their
operation and service offerings overseas, China’s rise has transformed –
and continues to transform – the nature of work and employment for many,
and how firms are managed. At the center of the global economic
integration, China provides an important entry point to a debate on
transnational trends of human resource management (HRM) and industrial
relations (IR). A particularly helpful lens to look at these trends is
operations of multinational corporations (MNCs) in and from China. As
intercultural and interinstitutional agents, MNCs have long been the focus
of international HRM and IR studies (e.g. Wilkinson et al., 2014). Thanks
to the growth of foreign direct investment (FDI) in China, HRM and IR in
MNCs in China have attracted substantial research attention since the early
1990s (e.g. Björkman & Fan, 2002; Smith & Pun, 2006; Chan, 2010; Zheng,
2014). However, research interest in HRM and IR in Chinese MNCs overseas
has only emerged, albeit is growing rapidly, in recent years (e.g. Tung,
2007; Lee, 2009; Cooke, 2014; Jackson, 2014; Zhu et al., 2014; Kamoche &
Siebers, 2015).

Advancing research on HRM and IR in MNCs in and from China has both
theoretical and practical rationales. Theoretically, this approach may
allow us to make a unique contribution to the core debate in the field of
international HRM and IR about the extent to which MNCs can or should
standardize their policies globally versus their need to respond to local
peculiarities (e.g. Berry et al., 2014; Edwards & Kuruvilla, 2005; Schuler
et al., 1993; Prahalad & Doz, 1987). First of all, to date the debate has
been largely based on empirical evidence collected from MNCs originating
from advanced economies. As MNCs from emerging market economies,
particularly China, may have different motivations and strategies of
internationalization from their counterparts in advanced economies, whether
or the extent to which various arguments developed in this debate hold true
warrants closer examination. Moreover, with major goals of acquiring
strategic assets, be it natural resources or managerial and technical
know-how, Chinese MNCs’ HRM and IR practices may have distinct features
that may provide fresh insights on this debate. Second, although there is
already a body of literature on HRM and IR of MNCs operating in China, this
has been heavily oriented in the manufacturing sector. It is important to
broaden the research domain to include other growing sectors and to update
our knowledge as the Chinese financial, product and labor market, and other
institutions have been constantly changing which may significantly affect
firms’ HRM and IR strategies and practices. Finally, through comparing and
contrasting MNCs in and from China, we may gain a better understanding of
convergence and divergence of MNCs’ HRM and IR practices and the role of
the underlying institutional and cultural factors.

Practically, knowledge on HRM and IR in Chinese MNCs overseas will meet the
urgent demands of various stakeholders. While China has become a major
source of FDI in many countries, Chinese MNCs’ knowledge of international
operation, particularly with regard to HRM and IR practices that are highly
context sensitive, dramatically lags behind. Meanwhile, there are
substantial and growing interest, concerns, and controversies about the
impacts of Chinese investment on host countries’ national security,
economy, laws, business, and labor. A deeper understanding of Chinese MNCs’
management and employment practices and their broad economic and political
impacts, therefore, is of tremendous value for policy makers, business,
labor, and other organizations. In addition, recent changes in China’s
politico-economic landscapes, such as the end of various preferential
treatments of foreign firms and policy support for industrial upgrading and
innovation, the implementation of new labor laws, growing labor shortage
and rising labor cost, and the increasing competitiveness of Chinese
domestic firms have posted new challenges as well as opportunities for
foreign MNCs in China. More recently, there has been growing signs of
withdrawal of FDI from the country. Research findings of HRM and IR in MNCs
in China will have the potential of informing policy and management
decisions both in and outside of China.

This special issue seeks to examine issues related to a range of strategic
and functional areas of HRM and IR. In particular, empirical studies that
straddle HRM and IR issues are welcomed. The objective is to advance the
theoretical and empirical knowledge of effective people management in MNCs
in and from China. Key research areas that contributors may address include:

·         What are the key features of HRM and IR practices in MNCs in or
from China? How have these features evolved and how do they confirm,
improve, or challenge conventional wisdom in international HRM and IR?

·         To what extent and in what areas do MNCs in or from China adopt
host country HRM and IR practices, transfer their home practices to host
countries, or develop hybridized practices to reconcile the tension between
global integration and local differentiation? Further, how do host and home
country institutions and culture shape HRM and IR practices of these MNCs

·         How do these MNCs adapt their HRM and IR practices to various
demographic, economic, social, or political changes arising in host
countries, such as aging population, increasing urbanization, rising income
gaps, growing regional differences, and emerging political and social
turmoil? What might be some promises and perils?

·         Are there significant similarities/variations *across* Chinese
MNCs operating overseas or *across* foreign MNCs in China with respect to
their HRM and IR practices? How might individual, organizational,
national/regional, and global factors explain these

·         What are the impacts of these MNCs’ HRM and IR practices on firm
performance and outcomes of both expatriates and host country employees
such as wages, benefits, and labor rights? And what are their impacts on
host country economies and labor market institutions such as labor laws and
labor unions?

·         How do these MNCs use and manage their expatriates? To what
extent, and if so, how are expatriates and host country employees treated
differently (e.g., compensation)? And what are the organizational and
individual consequences of any differential treatment?

·         How do expatriates and host country stakeholders such as
government, workers, and labor unions respond to HRM and IR practices of
these MNCs? Are these responses able to reshape the HRM and IR practices,
and if so, how?

·         Where do these MNCs discover learning opportunities for
intercultural or interinstitutional integration of HRM and IR practices? Do
MNCs transfer what they learned from a host country back to the home
country operations? If so, what and how?

·         How does a diverse demographic of global workforce (i.e.
immigrants, diaspora, and multiculturals) influence MNCs’ diversity
management practices and shape the workforce’s identification with the MNC?
Are there best practice cases or major lessons learned from unsuccessful
handling of these HR issues?

·         What are the impacts of various supranational institutions, such
as the International Labor Organization, global labor unions, bi-lateral or
multi-lateral trade agreements, and codes of conduct in global production
networks, on MNCs’ HRM and IR practices? And what are the boundary
conditions of these impacts?

·         How do HRM and IR practices in MNCs in or from China compare with
those in MNCs in or from other emerging markets respectively such as India,
Latin America, and Africa?  Are there any similarities and differences? How
do organizational (e.g. ownership), market, cultural, or social factors
determine the similarities and differences?

The above list of questions is not intended to be exhaustive. The guest
editors of the special issue encourage authors to contribute papers that
address issues consistent with the themes outlined in this call for papers.
Papers can be from different theoretical perspectives, as can be the use of
different empirical methodologies (e.g. quantitative, qualitative,
case-oriented or mixed). Works presented must be original studies that
contribute to the advancement of existing knowledge and debates on the

Special Issue Conference:

Those interested in submitting papers for the conference are asked to
submit an abstract of 500-1,000 words to HRM by *December 31, 2015* via
email to [log in to unmask] organizers aim to advise the authors if
their abstracts have been accepted by January 7, 2016. Invited authors are
expected to submit full papers (formatted to HRM standards) via email to
[log in to unmask] by *7 March 2016*. This will ensure that the papers
can be distributed to other participants to read prior to the conference.
Invited authors will present their papers at a conference to be held at Rutgers
University-New Brunswick, USA on *17-18 March 2016*. Following the
conference, authors will be encouraged to submit their revised papers for
consideration to a special issue of HRM (see below).

Special issue:

Submissions to the special issue of HRM must be submitted no later than *August
31, 2016*. Authors should submit their manusrcipts for review by following
the submission guidline of HRM. We encourage authors to submit their papers
to the conference prior to submitting them to the special issue. In our
experience participation in such a conference would be helpful for paper
development. However, this is not conditional for submitting to the special
issue. All papers for the special issue will go through the standard peer
review process of HRM without guarantee of final acceptance.

*References *

Berry, H., Guillén, M. F., & Hendi, A. S. (2014). Is there convergence
across countries? A spatial approach. Journal of International Business
Studies, 45(4), 387-404.

Björkman, I. & Fan, X. C. (2002). Human resource management and the
performance of Western firms in China. International Journal of Human
Resource Management, 13(6), 853-864.

Chan, C.K.C. (2010). The challenge of labour in China: Strikes and the
changing labour regime in global factories. London: Routledge.

Cooke, F.L. (2014). Chinese multinational firms in Asia and Africa:
relationships with institutional actors and patterns of employment
practices. Human Resource Management, 53(6), 877–896.

Edwards, T., & Kuruvilla, S. (2005). International HRM: national business
systems, organizational politics and the international division of labour
in MNCs. International Journal of Human Resource Management, 16(1), 1-21.

Jackson, T. (2014), Employment in Chinese MNEs: Appraising the Dragon's
Gift to Sub-Saharan Africa. Human Resource Management, 53(6), 897–919.

Kamoche, K., & Siebers, L.Q. (2015). Chinese Management Practices in Kenya:
Toward a Post-Colonial Critique. The International Journal of Human
Resource Management, 26(21), 2718-2743.

Lee, C.K. (2009). Raw encounters: Chinese managers, African workers and the
politics of casualization in Africa’s Chinese enclaves. The China
Quarterly, 199, 647–666.

Prahalad, C. & Doz, Y. (1987). The multinational mission: Balancing local
demands and global vision. New York, NY: The Free Press.

Schuler, R.S., Dowling, P.J., & DeCeri, H. (1993). An integrative framework
of strategic international human resource management. International Journal
of Human Resource Management, 4(4), 717-764.

Smith, C., & Pun, N. (2006). The dormitory labour regime in China as a site
for control and resistance. International Journal of Human Resource
Management, 17(8), 1456-1470.

Tung, R.L. (2007). The human resource challenge to outward foreign direct
investment aspirations from emerging economies: the case of China.
International Journal of Human Resource Management, 18(5), 868-889.

Wilkinson, A., Wood, G. and Demirbag, M. (2014), Guest Editors’
Introduction: People Management and Emerging Market Multinationals. Human
Resource Management, 53(6), 835–849.

Zheng, Y. (2014). Managing human resource in China: The view from inside
MNCs. Cambridge University Press.

Zhu, J. S., Zhu, C. J. and De Cieri, H. (2014), Chinese MNCs’ Preparation
for Host-Country Labor Relations: An Exploration of Country-of-Origin
Effect. Human Resource Management, 53(6), 947–965

Mingwei Liu
Associate Professor and Ph.D. Co-Director
School of Management and Labor Relations
Rutgers University
50 Labor Center Way, New Brunswick, NJ, 08901
Phone: 848-932-6540
Fax: 732-932-8677

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