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Expatriate demographic characteristics and host country national support: an empirical investigation in Central/South America

Arup Varma ( Loyola University Chicago , Chicago, Illinois, USA)
Young-Jae Yoon ( Loyola University Chicago , Chicago, Illinois, USA)
Fabian Jintae Froese ( National Research Base of Intelligent Manufacturing Service , Chongqing Technology and Business University , Chongqing, China) ( University of Goettingen , Goettingen, Germany)

Cross Cultural & Strategic Management

ISSN: 2059-5794

Article publication date: 2 November 2020

Issue publication date: 29 April 2021

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Abstract

Purpose

The support of host country nationals (HCNs) is critical for expatriate adjustment and performance. Drawing from social identity theory and self-categorization theory, this study investigates the antecedents of HCNs' support toward expatriates in Central/South America, focusing on cultural similarities and expatriate race.

Design/methodology/approach

We conducted a quasi-experimental study to understand the antecedents that promote the willingness of HCNs to offer required support to expatriates. Data were gathered from 117 Latin American participants, who were asked to respond to questions about their perceptions of expatriates from the USA and their willingness to offer support to those expatriates.

Findings

Overall, our findings suggest that HCNs are likely to provide support to expatriates when they perceive the expatriates as similar in terms of culture and race. Specifically, African Americans received more positive attitudes and support than White Americans in South/Central America. The effect of cultural similarity on HCN willingness to support expatriates was mediated by perceived trustworthiness.

Originality/value

The present study extends the research on HCN support to expatriates, to Central/South America, an important region that has been under-studied in the expatriate–HCN context. Another novel feature of our study is that we investigate the role of expatriate race and cultural similarity and illuminate the underlying mechanism of the relationship between expatriate race and HCN support.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Alexandra Campos for her help with data collection.

Citation

Varma, A., Yoon, Y.-J. and Froese, F.J. (2021), "Expatriate demographic characteristics and host country national support: an empirical investigation in Central/South America", Cross Cultural & Strategic Management, Vol. 28 No. 2, pp. 407-423. https://doi.org/10.1108/CCSM-02-2020-0036

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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