With apologies for cross postings. Owing the the clash with the AOM submissions deadline, we have had a number of requests to extend the submission deadline for the above special issue. Please note the new submission deadline is January 27th 2017

Strategic Alliances, Joint Ventures, and Mergers and Acquisitions In The Global Context: The Role of Human Resource Management


The frequency and scale of the cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and mergers and acquisitions (M&As) have significantly increased during the past two decades in spite of continuous reports on their high failure rates (e.g., Gomes, Cohen, and Mellahi, 2011; Gomes, Weber, Brown, and Tarba, 2011; Weber, Tarba, and Oberg, 2013). Recent research studies show that there are significant differences in institutional environments, corporate governance practices, and markets between developed economies and emerging economies, and point to the importance of extending of the existing knowledge on strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&A by examining them in new national and organizational settings (Buckley, Elia, and Kafouros, 2014; Lebedev, Peng, Xie, and Stevens, 2014).

In this context the existing research evidence suggests that poor human resource management (HRM) has been a major factor contributing to strategic alliances, joint ventures, M&A failures (e.g., Angwin, Mellahi, Gomes, and Peter, 2014; Weber and Tarba, 2014). However, the understanding of the role of HRM in strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As and their relationship to organizational performance remain partial (Weber, 2012). Several reviews have pointed out that most of the existing research on strategic alliances, joint ventures, M&A has not been systematic and linked to any comprehensive theory, and rarely contains models that are applicable across different organizational settings (e.g., Gomes, Angwin, Weber, and Tarba, 2013; Gomes, Weber, Brown, and Tarba, 2011; Haleblian, Devers, McNamara, Carpenter, and Davison, 2009).

The existing studies on strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&A have focused on partner selection (Ahlstrom, Levitas, Hitt, Dacin, and Zhu, 2014; Chand and Katou, 2012), various HRM practices (Cooke, 2006; Cooke and Huang, 2011; Sarala, Junni, Cooper, and Tarba, 2014), cultural differences and distance (Dikova and Rao Sahib, 2013; Weber, Tarba, and Reichel, 2011), multi-stage model of knowledge management (Pak, Ra, and Lee, 2015), capabilities transfer (Bjorkman, Stahl, and Vaara, 2007), value appropriation by partners (Contractor and Woodley, 2015), strategic agility (Junni, Sarala, Tarba, and Weber, 2015; Weber and Tarba, 2014), talent retention (Zhang, Ahammad, Tarba, Cooper, Glaister, and Wang, 2014), language differences (Zhu, Xia, and Makino, 2015), multiple post-formation change processes (Chung and Beamish, 2012), post-acquisition integration approaches (Weber, Tarba, and Reichel, 2009), and the speed of integration (Bauer and Matzler, 2014). Furthermore, the effects of HR practices such as communication in the strategic partnership may vary across countries. For example, higher communication in several countries has been found to have a positive effect on M&A, while in other countries it had a negative impact on M&A (Weber, Rachman-Moore, and Tarba, 2012).

While globalization increases the number of cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As, research on the role of HRM in these strategic partnerships remains limited. Clearly, the complexity of global implementation and operation of strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As requires a sophisticated adaptation of HR strategy and practices, which gives rise to new questions, relevant to theory, research, and practice, about the nature and effects of HR practices in these collaborative agreements. The failure to account for HR issues is surprising since HRM has the potential to play an important role during all stages of the strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&A.

The goal of this Special Issue is to stimulate scholars to explore how underlying concepts and methodologies can make an important contribution towards understanding cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As and their performance. 

We invite papers that focus on the role of HRM in global strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As in both national and international settings. The complex, widespread and growing phenomenon of strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As will require the incorporation of multidisciplinary, multi-level and cross-cultural models and analyses. We encourage both conceptual and empirical contributions that may address, but are not limited to, the following topics:  

  1. What may be the antecedents, moderators/mediators, and outcomes of cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As, and their impact on organizational performance?  

  2. How can the organizational context in and from emerging markets and in the particular context of the senior management's strategic decisions best contribute to the success of cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As?

  3. What skills, competencies, and behaviors do managers and employees need to acquire to enable successful cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As?

  4. What may be the impact of strategic agility and ambidexterity on the success/failure of cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As?

  5. What may be the impact of emotions and resilience on the success/failure of cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As? And may be the role of societal culture in shaping these emotions and psychological conditions?

  6. What may be the impact of leadership and trust on the success/failure of cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As?

  7. What may be the value-creating and value-capturing factors and their impact on performance of cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As?

  8. What is the impact of corporate culture differences and national culture distance on the performance of cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As?

  9. How may post-acquisition integration approaches and speed of integration impact on performance of cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As?

  10. What influences target reputation transferability, consumer animosity, and customer retention in cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As?

  11. What are the interrelationships between cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&A and organizational change, transformation, and renewal?

  12. What is the impact of corporate social responsibility and non-market strategies on the performance of cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As?

This Special Issue seeks to extend the knowledge of the above issues and beyond. We encourage submissions from a variety of theoretical and empirical perspectives.

Papers should engage in critique and be thought-provoking. Specifically prospective submissions are expected to adopt a processual and potentially contested view of the existing knowledge in the field, emphasize the need to open-up existing ways of thinking to scrutiny, and in doing so, to promote new perspectives and interpretations.

We welcome contributions that aim to elucidate existing theories and enhance our empirical understanding of the dynamic nature of strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&As in different parts of the world, as well as contributions exploring the causal relationships between individual and organizational performance within the cross-border strategic alliances, joint ventures, and M&A setting. Studies are encouraged, but not limited, to addressing the above issues. They may deploy different empirical methodologies (quantitative, qualitative, or mixed).

Submission process

Authors should submit their manuscripts from November 10, 2016 but no later than submission deadline of January 27th, 2017, online via the Journal of World Business EVISE submission system at   To ensure that all manuscripts are correctly identified for consideration for this Special Issue, it is important that authors select “SI: Strategic Alliances” when they reach the “Article Type” step in the submission process. Manuscripts should be prepared in accordance with the Journal of World Business Guide for Authors available on the journal web page. All submitted manuscripts will be subject to the Journal of World Business’s blind review process.

For further information and questions, please contact the lead guest co-editor Shlomo Tarba by [log in to unmask] who will be in charge of managing the special issue on behalf of the guest editorial team.


Ahlstrom, D., Levitas, E., Hitt, M. A., Dacin, M. T., and Zhu, H. (2014). The three faces of China: Strategic alliance partner selection in three ethnic Chinese economies. Journal of World Business, 49, 572-585.

Angwin, D. N., Mellahi, K., Gomes, E., and Peter, E. (2014). How communication approaches impact mergers and acquisitions outcomes. International Journal of Human Resource Management (Forthcoming).

Bauer, F., and Matzler, K. (2014). Antecedents of M&A success: The role of strategic complementarity, cultural fit, and degree and speed of integration. Strategic Management Journal, 35(2), 269-291.

Bjorkman, I., Stahl, G. K., and Vaara, E. (2007). Cultural differences and capability transfer in cross-border acquisitions: the mediating roles of capability complementarity, absorptive capacity, and social integration. Journal of International Business Studies, 38, 658–672.

Buckley, P. J., Elia, S., and Kafouros, M. (2014). Acquisitions by emerging market multinationals: Implications for firm performance. Journal of World Business (Forthcoming).

Chand, M. and Katou, A. A. (2012). Strategic determinants for the selection of partner alliances in the Indian tour operator industry: A cross-national study. Journal of World Business, 47, 167-177.

Chung, C. C. and Beamish, P. W. (2012). Multi-party international joint ventures: Multiple post-formation change processes. Journal of World Business, 47, 648-663.

Contractor, F. J. and Woodley, J. A. (2015). How the alliance pie is split: Value appropriation by each partner in cross-border technology transfer alliances. Journal of World Business, 50, 535-547.

Cooke, F. L. (2006). Acquisitions of Chinese state-owned enterprises by MNCs: Driving forces, barriers and implications for HRM. British Journal of Management, 17:1, S105-S121. 

Cooke, F. L. and Huang, K. (2011). Post-acquisition evolution of the appraisal and reward systems: A study of Chinese IT firms acquired by US firms. Human Resource Management, 50:6, 839-858.

Dikova, D., and Rao Sahib, P. (2013). Is cultural distance a bane or a boon for cross-border acquisition performance? Journal of World Business, 48(1), 77-86.

Gomes, E., Weber, Y., Brown, C., and Tarba, S.Y. (2011). Mergers, Acquisitions and Strategic Alliances: Understanding The Process. Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan.

Gomes, E., Angwin, D. N., Weber, Y., and Tarba, S. Y. (2013). Critical success factors through the mergers and acquisitions process: Revealing pre‐and post‐M&A connections for improved performance. Thunderbird International Business Review, 55 (1), 13-35.

Gomes, E., Cohen, M., and Mellahi, K. (2011). When two African cultures collide: A study of interactions between managers in a strategic alliance between between two African organizations. Journal of World Business, 46, 5-12.

Haleblian, J., Devers, C. E., McNamara, G., Carpenter, M. A., and Davison, R. B. (2009). Taking stock of what we know about mergers and acquisitions: A review and research agenda. Journal of Management, 35(3), 469-502.

Junni, P., Sarala, R., Tarba, S. Y., and Weber, Y. (2015). Strategic agility in acquisitions. British Journal of Management, (Forthcoming).

Lebedev, S., Peng, M. W., Xie, E., and Stevens, C. E. (2014). Mergers and acquisitions in and out of emerging economies. Journal of World Business (Forthcoming).

Pak, Y. S., Ra, W., and Lee, J. M. (2015). An integrated multi-stage model of knowledge management in international joint ventures: Identifying a trigger for knowledge exploration and knowledge harvest. Journal of World Business, 50, 180-191.

Sarala, R.M., Cooper, C., Junni, P., and Tarba, S. (2014). A socio-cultural perspective on knowledge transfer in mergers and acquisitions. Journal of Management (Forthcoming).

Weber, Y., Rachman-Moore, D., and Tarba, S.Y. (2012). Human resource practices during post-merger conflict and merger performance. International Journal of Cross-Cultural Management, 12 (1), 73-99.

Weber, Y., and Tarba, S.Y. (2014). Strategic agility: A state-of-art. California Management Review, 56 (3), 1-8.

Weber, Y., Tarba, S.Y., and Oberg, C. (2013). A Comprehensive Guide to Mergers and Acquisitions: Managing the Critical Success Factors Across Every Stage of the M&A Process. USA & UK: Financial Times Press.

Weber, Y., Tarba, S.Y., and Reichel, A. (2009). International mergers and acquisitions performance revisited - The role of cultural distance and post-acquisition integration approach. In C. Cooper & S. Finkelstein (Eds.) Advances in Mergers and Acquisitions, Vol. 8, Emerald Publishing, UK.

Weber, Y. Tarba, S. Y., and Reichel, A. (2011). A model of the influece of culture on integration approaches and international mergers and acquisitions performance. International Studies of Management and Organization, 41(3), 9-24.

Zhang, J., Ahammad, M. F., Tarba, S. Y., Cooper, C. L., Glaister, K. W.,  and  Wang, J. (2014). The effect of leadership style on talent retention during merger and acquisition integration: Evidence from China. International Journal of Human Resource Management, 26, 1021–1050.

Zhu, H., Xia, J., and Makino, S. (2015). How do high-technology firms create value in international M&A? Integration, autonomy and cross-border contingencies. Journal of World Business (Forthcoming).

Professor David Collings
Professor of Human Resource Management
Associate Dean for Research
Senior Editor, Journal of World Business
DCU Business School
Dublin City University
Dublin 9
Tel. +35317006937
Email. [log in to unmask]
Twitter: @collingsdg 

Séanadh Ríomhphoist/Email Disclaimer

Tá an ríomhphost seo agus aon chomhad a sheoltar leis faoi rún agus is lena úsáid ag an seolaí agus sin amháin é. Is féidir tuilleadh a léamh anseo. 

This e-mail and any files transmitted with it are confidential and are intended solely for use by the addressee. Read more here.

AIB-L is brought to you by the Academy of International Business.
For information:
To post message: [log in to unmask]
For assistance: [log in to unmask]
AIB-L is a moderated list.