Call for Papers

Special Issue of The International Journal of Human Resource Management<>:

Conceptual and Empirical Discoveries in Successful HRM Implementation<>

Guest Editors

Tanya Bondarouka<>, Jordi Trullenb<>, Mireia Valverdec<>

a University of Twente, The Netherlands; b ESADE Business School, Spain; c Rovira and Virgili University, Spain

Papers submission: December 1, 2016

As the body of evidence has grown over the years showing a positive association between HRM and firm performance, interest has shifted towards understanding how this relationship takes place. Among various approaches, HR scholars have been paying increasing attention to the way in which HRM practices are implemented in organizations. It is argued that successful implementation is a necessary condition for a relationship between HRM and firm performance. The focus of this Special Issue is on implementation of HRM practices, seen as a non-linear process that starts with the design of a new HRM policy and/or practice, and evolves towards its engaged use by employees, managers and HRM professionals. Our purpose is to expand the research field in this area. First, we call for contributions that consider more and different actors in HRM implementation apart from HRM professionals and line managers. Second, we call for a broader conceptualization of HRM implementation success that goes beyond its effectiveness. Third, we welcome contributions that attempt to differentiate between successful implementation of HRM and the success of HRM in organizations.
We are particularly interested in studies that offer new theoretical, methodological, and empirical insights, contributing in this way to our understanding of a multi-actor, multi-level, and evolving nature of HRM implementation.
Sample subjects for further examination may include:

*         Conceptual clarity and measurement of HRM implementations: What theories are better suited to explain different aspects of HRM implementations and why? Can we generate mid-range theories of implementation? How may different paradigms on theory building (Gioia and Pitre, 1990) offer diverse perspectives on HRM implementation (e.g. Alvesson and Kärreman, 2007)? What research designs are better suited to study HRM implementations processes?

*         Stakeholder view of HR implementation: What is the role of top management, consultants, outsourcing vendors, trade unions and employees in HRM implementation? How is effective implementation perceived by different actors and what underlying frames do they use to form their judgments? What interactions among different actors affect HRM implementation success?

*         Context in HRM implementation: What are the effects of labor legislations, industrial relations systems, cultural differences, organizational structure and technology on the success of HRM implementations?

*         The role of time in HRM implementation: What are the mechanisms and processes that explain improved versus diminished use of HRM policies over time (e.g. Bartunek et al., 2007)?

*         HRM implementation and technology: What is the role of Information Technology in shaping HRM implementation processes?

Do you have questions about this Special Issue?  Contact Guest Editors via e-mail:

Tanya Bondarouk: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>

Jordi Trullen: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>

Mireia Valverde: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>


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