*** Apologies for cross-postings ***

Dear colleagues

Join us on April 12th (15:00 UTC), for the 16th instalment of our IHRM Webinar Series. We are delighted to welcome our next speaker, Mary Yoko Brannen, who will talk about Ethnography in International Business. Registration is free (Please register here: and everyone is welcome.

Please see full details about the talk below:

Ethnography in International Business: Theorizing from Fieldwork to Theory in Complex Cultural Contexts

This webinar is for anyone interested in using ethnography either alone or together with other research methods to build theory on the effects of culture in today’s global and multicultural business contexts. Understanding how culture affects international human resource issues such as global teaming, communication across cultures, language management, work culture integration, strategic talent management, and a multitude of other organizational processes is critical to IB scholarship and practice. Yet, armed with only superficial measures of national cultural differences proliferated by easy-to-use, statistically testable, cultural dimensions offered by aggregate values-based models of culture (e.g., Hofstede, Schwartz, and The Globe study) IB scholars find themselves stereotype rich and operationally poor where culture meets IB context. Such quantitative data give few insights into the challenge of understanding the complex cultural phenomena. The term “culture” is often used synonymously with national culture in the field of IB, yet it is in fact a multi-faceted and complex construct involving the coming together of various spheres of culture including national, regional, institutional, organizational, functional, etc. enacted by individuals on an ongoing basis.

Research settings in international business are therefore rife with multilevel cultural interactions due to diverging cultural assumptions brought together in real time by the merging (often virtually) of individuals (often multicultural themselves) across distance and differentiated contexts. Consequently, traditional positivist approaches to understanding culture fall short of adequately capturing the complexity of cultural phenomena in international organizations. Ethnography with its two essential elements—fieldwork, including its central methodological building block of participant observation, and its focus on culture—is the most effective method for gaining insights into such microlevel embedded cultural phenomena. Drawing from work-in-progress on her new book on ethnography in international business (forthcoming from Cambridge University Press), Professor Brannen will address three distinct analytical modes of ethnographic inquiry relative to IB theorizing building with increasing scope from the most micro level of analysis—that of a single organization—building up to the global strategic context of the multinational corporation.

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

15:30 - 16:30 UTC (Coordinated Universal Time)
8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. PDT (San Francisco, Vancouver)
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EDT (Boston, New York, Miami)
4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. GMT (United Kingdom)
5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. CET (Vienna, Berlin, Paris, Zagreb)
6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. TRT (Istanbul)
11:30 p.m. - 12:30 a.m. CST (Beijing, Hong Kong)
12:30 a.m. – 1:30 a.m. JPT (Tokyo, Kyoto)
01:30 a.m. – 2:30 a.m. AEDT (Melbourne, Sydney)

Find your local time here:

Registration: The event is free and open to anyone who is interested but you must register to receive the link for attending. Please register here:

As an international partnership, the IHRM series welcomes speakers from all over the world and multiple time zones. This session will be recorded to share with registrants who are not able to attend the live session.

Event Access: This event will be hosted virtually on Zoom. Event access links will be provided 24 hours prior to the event start.

About the speaker:

Mary Yoko Brannen is Honorary Professor at the Copenhagen Business School, Professor Emerita at San José State University and Fellow of the Academy of International Business having served as Deputy Editor of the Journal of International Business Studies for two consecutive elected terms (2011-2016).

An organizational ethnographer, her research seeks to understand the effects of multiple cultural contexts on individuals and organizations in which they are employed. Her work, asks: How do language and culture affect today’s complex cultural organizations and the people they employ? What are the effects of today’s new workplace demographic brought on by unprecedented migration and mobility? Through her understanding of the challenges and skillsets of this new demographic, Professor Brannen sheds light on the many opportunities they bring to organizations.

This session will be moderated by Elaine Farndale, Professor of Human Resource Management, Penn State University. Human Resource Management and has published articles and presented work on migrant workers, HRM and SDGs and Green HRM.

This event is part of a IHRM Webinar Series, organized by the Centre for Global Workforce Strategy at Simon Fraser University (Canada), the Center for International Human Resource Studies at the Pennsylvania State University (USA), Clarion (soon to be Pennsylvania Western) University (USA), ESCP Business School and RIT Croatia (Europe).

Previous installments of the IHRM Webinar Series are available online at our YouTube Channel:

Mila Lazarova, PhD
Canada Research Chair in Global Workforce Management
Professor, International Business
Beedie School of Business
Simon Fraser University
500 Granville Street
Vancouver, BC V6C 1W6

Phone: 778.782.7709

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