Apologies for cross posting


Dear GEM&L friends,


I would like to kindly remind you of the DEADLINE for SUBMISSION of  short (or full) paper PROPOSALS for the 14th GEM&L Workshop, which will take place online from May 10 to 12, 2021 : the deadline is Friday, January 15, 2021 (23:59 CET).


Important information

Please note that you must fill out the submission form even if you decide to present your 2020 manuscript without modification. However, you don’t need to upload it again.


Submission form available here: https://geml.eu/em-strasbourg-2020__trashed/em-strasbourg-2021__trashed/submit-your-paper/



This call for paper can also be downloaded from the GEM&L website.





14th GEM&L International Workshop on Management and Language

EM Strasbourg Business School

10-12 May 2021


Call for Papers



Global working and language:

Towards an understanding of global-local interplay


Global forms of work have become common in MNEs (Reiche, Lee and Allen, 2019) in an ever-growing heterogeneity of local environments (Jaussaud and Mayrhofer, 2014). By global working, we mean situations in which employees from diverse cultural backgrounds, often in geographically distant and different national contexts, are collaborating (Hinds, Liu and Lyon, 2011). This includes all forms of expatriation, corporate and self-initiated expatriation, short-term assignments, flexpatriation and international business travel (Mayerhofer, Hartmann, Michelitsch-Riedl and Kollinger, 2004) as well as work in global virtual teams and domestic work with involvement in international responsibilities and/or interactions with colleagues from different countries. This last aspect concerning virtual work has become all the more crucial as we face the unique challenges experienced during the health crisis (Doh, 2020).

We have chosen to use the expression “global working” to highlight the fluidity and situatedness of these specific work experiences, close to “international working” introduced by Mayrhofer, Reichel and Sparrow (2011) and by McNulty and Brewster (2019). Angouri and Piekkari (2018) also call for a more fluid approach to organizations and global work which conceptualizes organizations as more than their physical and legal structures. In this perspective management and organizational scholars have shown that discourse shapes organizations (Cooren, Vaara, Langley and Tsoukas, 2014; see also Cooren, Kuhn, Cornelissen and Clark, 2011, in the special issue of Organization Studies on Communicating, Organizing and Organization). The importance of situatedness in context raises the question of global and local interplay in each global working situation: i.e. how global and local dynamics co-construct the reality of global working experiences within the language ecosystem (Angouri and Piekkari, 2018) of each local environment.

Language lies at the heart of global working at three different levels identified by Reiche and colleagues (2019): actors, processes and structures. Firstly, actors may be more or less invited to participate in global working arrangements and to voice their opinions in these instances depending on their level of mastery of the corporate language of the MNE. Employees may be empowered (Tietze, 2008) or, on the contrary, marginalized if they do not master the language of the organization (Neeley, 2017). In this regard, individuals having developed multicultural identities may bring precious contributions to global working (Lee, Masuda, Fu and Reiche, 2018). Research also suggests that expatriates proficient in the language of their host country develop more and deeper relationships with locals and adjust better than others (Zhang and Peltokorpi, 2015). Whatever the context, language competence may not suffice to erase the effects of differing native communication styles or to prevent the doubts and frustration these may cause (Louhiala-Salminen, 2005; Tréguer-Felten, 2018), a feeling shared by increasing numbers of diverse types of global workers in MNCs and especially by those labelled migrant workers.

Secondly, in terms of processes, it has been suggested that language skills influence knowledge sharing and that an overemphasis on international networks reduces employees’ embeddedness in local networks which is critical to MNCs’ development (Peltokorpi and Vaara, 2014). Other areas have also been explored, such as:  how corporate international policies or international marketing campaigns are deployed locally or how language skills enable boundary spanning activities (Barner-Ramussen, Ehrnrooth, Koveshnikov and Mäkelä, 2014) and influence teamwork (Tenzer and Pudelko, 2017). 

Finally, it is important to unravel the role of language in different structures of global work and to understand, for instance, if an expatriate moving physically to another country will resort more to speaking a local language in a specific host country than someone involved in global working arrangements in his or her own country. Global-local dynamics in specific contexts and different situations of global working may trigger different ways of negotiating language use.  As a result of the current pandemic, global workers may have to rethink their virtual working practices. Indeed, the dramatic increase in situations where virtual work is imposed makes it difficult to maintain network ties, especially weak ties (Levin and Kurtzberg, 2020; Milliken, Kneeland and Flynn, 2020). In this regard, the fact that a majority of employees work remotely may affect global workers’ access to important information passed through informal networks and weak ties. Global working language practices may also be destabilized for former business travellers who are asked to work from home and to communicate with colleagues around the world in different time zones. From a local perspective, the global health crisis may place new demands on host country nationals working with international staff (Faeth and Kitter, 2020; Fee, 2020) with the lack of opportunities for informal interaction between the different parties impeding relationship building. 

Understanding these dynamics requires a fluid approach to language use, seen as social practice (Karhunen, Kankaanranta, Louhiala-Salminen and Piekkari, 2018). From this perspective, languages are not static elements, to be analysed merely through the prism of proficiency in a national language. Janssens and Steyaert’s multilingual franca (2014) concept illustrates this approach by throwing light on the local practices resulting from the imposition of English in MNEs.

To examine the implications of local language use more in depth it would be valuable to investigate how business concepts and work processes are understood and enacted by local employees in their own contexts. For instance, subsidiaries located in cross-border regions provide opportunities to observe how employees draw on all their language resources and combine them to make themselves understood (Langinier and Ehrhart, 2020).

Analysing language as a social practice raises a number of methodological issues and calls for self-reported data surveys, observations, critical ethnographic studies, as well as interaction analysis (Angouri and Piekkari, 2018).  

We thus welcome papers which investigate the interplay between new forms of global work and language use in MNC and non-MNC contexts (i.e. SMEs, NGOs, etc.) (Angouri and Piekkari, 2018). These papers could address but are not limited to:

·      The link between language and the boundary spanning role of global workers

·      The role of “born globals”: how people with multicultural identities experience global working and what their relation is to language in these instances

·      The way migrants transport language in MNCs, how their language skills might be recognized in some instances

·      The way language is used by global marketing specialists, how international marketing campaigns are deployed internationally, and what the role of language is in this process

·      The impact of differing communication styles on global-local dynamics and processes

·      Methodological issues associated with the analysis of language in global working situations, what kind of data collection this requires, what approach could fully account for the complexities of global-local dynamics and their link to language in global working situations

·      Multilevel analysis highlighting how the macro environmental context and the corporate context influence global workers’ multilingual practices

·      Translating the research findings on global working and language into the management education sphere

·        The evolution of language practices as global and local working patterns become increasingly virtual

·         The impact of working from home on multilingual working situations 



Angouri, J. & Piekkari, R. (2018). Organising multilingually: setting an agenda for studying language at work. European Journal of International Management, 1/2, 8-27.

Barner-Rasmussen, W., Ehrnrooth, M., Koveshnikov, A. & Mäkelä, K. (2014). Cultural and language skills as resources for boundary spanning within the MNC. Journal of International Business Studies, 45, 886-905.

Cooren, F., Kuhn, T. R., Cornelissen, J. P. & Clark, T. (2011). “Communication, organizing, and organization”. Organization Studies, 32, 1149-1170.

Cooren, F., Vaara, E., Langley, A. & Tsoukas, H. (Eds.) (2014). Language and communication at work: Discourse, narrativity, and organizing. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.

Doh, J. (2020, forthcoming). Introduction to Covid-19 commentaries. Journal of Management Studies,  https://doi.org/10.1111/joms.12635.

Hinds, P., Liu, L. & Lyon, J. (2011). Putting the global in global work: An intercultural lens on the practice of cross-national collaboration. Academy of Management Annals, 5, 135-188.

Faeth, P. & Kittler, M. (2017). How do you fear? Examining expatriates’ perception of danger and its consequences. Journal of Global Mobility: The Home of Expatriate Management Research, 5(4), 391-417.

Fee, A. (2020). How host-country nationals manage the demands of hosting expatriates: An exploratory field study. Journal of Global Mobility: The Home of Expatriate Management Research, in press.

Janssens, M. & Steyaert, C. (2014). Re-considering language within a cosmopolitan understanding: Toward a multilingual franca approach in international business studies. Journal of International Business Studies, 45, 623-39.

Jaussaud, J. & Mayrhofer, U. (2014). Les tensions global-local : L’organisation et la coordination des activités internationales. Management International? 18(1), 18-25.

Karhunen P., Kankaanranta, A., Louhiala-Salminen, L. & Piekkari, R. (2018). Let’s talk about language: A review of language sensitive research in international management. Journal of Management Studies, 55 (6), 980-1013.

Langinier, H. & Ehrhart, S. (2020). When local meets global: How introducing English destabilizes translanguaging practices in a cross-border organization. Management International.24, 79-92.

Lee, Y.-T., Masuda, A., Fu, X. & Reiche, B. S. (2018). Navigating between home, host, and global: Consequences of multicultural team members’ identity configurations. Academy of Management Discoveries, 4, 180-201.

Levin, D. Z. and Kurtzberg, T. R. (2020, forthcoming). ‘Sustaining Employee Networks in the Virtual Workplace’. MIT Sloan Management Review, 61, 13-15.

Louhiala-Salminen, L., Charles, M. & Kankaanranta, A. (2005). English as a lingua franca in Nordic corporate mergers. English for Specific Purposes, 24, 401-21.

Mayrhofer, H., Hartmann, L. C., Michelitsch–Riedl, G. & Kollinger, I. (2004). Flexpatriate assignments: A neglected issue in global staffing. International Journal of Human Resource Management, 15, 1371-89.

Mayrhofer, W., Reichel, A. & Sparrow, P. (2012). Alternative Forms of International Working. In Stahl G. K., Björkman, I., Morris S. (Eds), Handbook of Research in International Human Resource Management (2nd ed.). Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar, 300-327.

Milliken, F. J., Kneeland, M. K. & Flynn, E. (2020, forthcoming). Implications of the Covid-19 Pandemic for Gender Equity issues at work, Journal of Management Studies,  https://doi.org/10.1111/joms.12628.

McNulty, Y. & Brewster, C. (Eds) (2019). Working Internationally: Expatriation, Migration and Other Global Work. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar.

Neeley, T. B. (2017). The Language of Global Success: How a Common Tongue Transforms Multinational Organizations. New Jersey: Princeton University Press.

Peltokorpi, V. & Vaara, E. (2014). Knowledge transfer in multinational corporations: Productive and counterproductive effects of language-sensitive recruitment. Journal of International Business Studies, 45(5), 600–622.

Reiche, B. S., Lee, Y.-T. & Allen, D. (2019). Actors, structure, and processes: A review and conceptualization of global work integrating IB and HRM research. Journal of Management, 45(2), 359-383.

Tenzer, H. & Pudelko, M. (2017). The influence of language difference on power dynamics in multilingual teams. Journal of World Business, 52, 45­–61.

Tietze, S. (2008). International Management and Language. London: Routledge.

Tréguer-Felten, G. (2018). Langue Commune, Cultures Distinctes. Les Illusions du Globish. Québec : Presses de l'Université de Laval.

Zhang, L., E. & Peltokorpi, V. (2015). Multifaceted effects of host country language proficiency. The International Journal of Human Resource Management, 27, 1448-69.


Review Board

John Andrew, Melbourne University Business school, Australia

Anita Auer, University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Jo Angouri, University of Warwick, United Kingdom

Christophe Barmeyer, University of Passau, Germany 

Wilhelm Barner-Rasmussen, Åbo Akademi University, Finland 

Betty Beeler, ESC-Saint Etienne, France

Bjørge Anni Kari, NHH, Norway

Mary-Yoko Brannen, Gustavson School of Business, University of Victoria, Canada 

Jean-François Chanlat, Université Dauphine, Paris, France

Agnieszka Chidlow, University of Birmingham, United Kingdom

Amy Church-Morel, Université Savoie Mont-Blanc

Linda Cohen, ESCP-Europe, France 

Eric Davoine, FSES - University of Freiburg, Switzerland

Peter Daly, EDHEC, France

Dardo de Vecchi, Kedge Business School, France 

Maureen Ehrensberger, ZHAW School of Applied Linguistics, Switzerland

Sabine Ehrhart, University of Luxembourg, Luxembourg

Fan Shea Xuejiao, RMIT, Australia

Claudine Gaibrois, Universität St. Gallen, Switzerland

Anne-Wil Harzing, Middlesex University, London, United Kingdom

Pamela J. Hinds, Stanford University, USA

David Holford, UQAM, Canada

Sierk Horn, Fachhochschule Bregenz, Austria

Anna Kristina Hultgren, Open University, United Kingdom

John Humbley, University Paris Diderot, France

Marjana Johansson, University of Essex, United Kingdom

Komal Kalra, UVIC, Canada

Anne Kankaanranta, Aalto University School of Business, Finland

Helena Karjalainen, Ecole de management de Normandie, France

Jane Kassis-Henderson, ESCP-Europe, France

Alex Klinge, Copenhagen Business School, Denmark

Anders Klitmoller, Royal Danish Defence College, Denmark

Kaisa Koskinen, University of Tampere, Finland

Edyta Kostanek, Hanken School of economics, Finland

Alexei Koveshnikov, Aalto University Business school, Finland

Hélène Langinier, EM-Strasbourg, France

Jakob Lauring, Aarhus School of Business, Denmark        

Philippe Lecomte, Toulouse Business School, France

Bill Lee, Sheffield University Management School, United Kingdom

Myriam Leibbrand, Vienna University of Economics and Business, Austria

Leigh Anne Liu, Georgia State University, USA

Dorte Lønsmann, Copenhagen Business School, Denmark

Anja Louis, Sheffield Hallam University, United Kingdom

Ludovica Maggi, ISIT, Paris, France

Annelise Ly, NHH, Norway

Jasmin Mahadevan, Hochschule Pforzheim, Germany

Sarah Maitland, Goldsmiths University of London, United Kingdom

Tatyana Martynova, Saint Petersburg University, Russia

Gerlinde Mautner, Vienna University of Economics and Business, Austria

Ulrike Mayrhofer, IAE Nice, Université Côte d'Azur, France

Terry Mughan, Royal Roads University, Victoria BC, Canada

Katrin Muehlfeld, University of Trier, Germany

Florence Oloff, University of Basel, Switzerland

Elena Orlova, Saint Petersburg University, Russia

Markus Pudelko, University of Tübingen, Germany

Rebecca Piekkari, Aalto University School of Business, Finland

Tiina Räisänen, University of Oulu, Finland

Pamela Rogerson-Revell, University of Leicester, United Kingdom  

Sebastian Reiche, IESE, Spain

Guro Refsum Sanden, University of Göteborg, Sweden

Diana Sharpe, Sheffield Hallam University, United Kingdom

Doris Schedlitzki, University of the West of England, United Kingdom

Martyna Sliwa, University of Essex, United Kingdom

Helen Spencer-Oatey, University of Warwick, United Kingdom

Mike Szymanski, Moscow School of Management SKOLKOVO, Russia

Carol Tansley, Nottingham University, United Kingdom

Helene Tenzer, University of Tübingen, Germany

Siri Terjesen, American University, USA

Susanne Tietze, Sheffield Hallam University, United Kingdom

Geneviève Tréguer-Felten, CNRS, France

Mary Vigier, ESC Clermont Business School, France

Denice Welch, University of Melbourne, Australia

Sachiko Yamao, University of Melbourne, Australia

Lena Zander, Uppsala University, Sweden

Ling Eleanor Zhang, Royal Holloway University of London, United Kingdom

Mette Zølner, Copenhagen Business School, Denmark


Guidelines for authors

The paper should indicate the key theoretical, methodological and empirical questions addressed in the paper, the conceptual field(s) informing the paper, if applicable the data set used in the paper and the major theoretical and empirical contributions of the paper. All submissions must be original and should not have been previously accepted for publication.

Since we have maintained the same conference theme, every paper accepted for GEM&L 2020 will automatically be accepted for GEM&L 2021.

Authors have four options:

1.     Present their 2020 paper unchanged.

2.     Modify their 2020 short paper according to the reviewers' suggestions before re-submitting it.

3.     Elaborate on their 2020 paper by submitting a full paper between 7,500 and 9,000 words (inclusive of tables, references, and figure captions).

4.     Submit a new short paper for the GEM&L 2021 conference.

General instructions:

·       Length of short paper: between 3000 and 4000 words, excluding references.

·       Length of full paper: between 7,500 and 9,000 words (inclusive of tables, references, and figure captions).

·       Abstract (around 10 lines) to be included in the final programme, with 8 – 10 keywords.

Formatting guidelines:

·       First page with author’s name, affiliation, e-mail and postal address.

·       Text of the proposal: in .doc(x), anonymous, justified, 2.5 cm margins throughout.

·       Title: Times New Roman, bold, size 16.

·       Other titles: Times New Roman, bold, size 12.

·       Text: Times New Roman, size 12.


Format for references: 

Austin, J. L. (1962). How to Do Things with Words. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press.

Steyaert, C., Ostendorp, A. & Gaibrois, C. (2011). Multilingual organizations as 'linguascapes': Negotiating the position of English through discursive practices. Journal of World Business, 46(3), 270-278.


Proposals in French or in English in Word format to be uploaded on the GEM&L website, www.geml.eu by 15 January 2021

Re-submissions and new submissions will be subjected to a double-blind competitive review process on the basis of originality, rigor and relevance.  No author information or other identifying information should appear anywhere in the submission. 

Doctoral session

Please note that the conference will host a doctoral session, which will offer PhD students the opportunity to discuss their doctoral thesis project with the most prominent senior scholars in this field of research and to receive feedback from them.

All authors will be informed of the outcome of the review process no later than 15 March 2021.

At least one author of each paper must register for the conference and present the paper.


·       Awards will be presented for the best conference paper and the best reviewer.  

·       Nigel Holden Prize: We have the pleasure to announce that a Nigel Holden Prize will be awarded for the best doctoral thesis project submitted in 2021. In addition to the criteria mentioned above (originality, rigor and relevance), the Nigel Holden prize will take into consideration the use of sources in other languages than English.


Short paper:  15 January 2021

Notice of acceptance:  15 March 2021

GEM&L Conference: 10-12 May 2021


For any information concerning the conference, please contact: [log in to unmask]

For registration information go to:  www.geml.eu




Academic research group on Management & Language

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Member of the FNEGE scientific committee

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