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Support for female international business travellers in dual-career families

Katharina Puchmüller (Department of International Management, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Linz, Austria)
Iris Fischlmayr (Department of International Management, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Linz, Austria)

Journal of Global Mobility

ISSN: 2049-8799

Article publication date: 13 March 2017




The purpose of this paper is to evaluate experiences of female international business travellers living in dual-career families (DCFs) who also have childcare obligations. In particular, the paper explores in which way different sources of support – specifically organizational support – are perceived as important and are available to the women under research. Because of the women’s regular absences due to business trips and the fulfilment of their family role, challenges regarding childcare or household responsibilities may occur. Consequently and also according to social support theory, different types of support may be necessary to organize family and international career, and effectively perform in both environments.


This paper examines the experiences and thoughts of these women with special regards on support issues. Data are collected from 51 semi-structured interviews with internationally travelling women in DCF situations originating from seven Western and non-Western countries. The interviews are analysed applying template analysis.


Results show that, across countries, support is mainly derived from within family. Regarding institutional or organizational support, however, the reported expectations and actually offered activities differ because of local institutional and cultural variations. The examined women value different forms of organizational support, but do not necessarily expect it.


This paper represents the first exploratory examinations of various forms of support for female international business travellers in DCFs suggested by social support theory. It includes a culturally diverse sample and contributes to cross-cultural career research.



Puchmüller, K. and Fischlmayr, I. (2017), "Support for female international business travellers in dual-career families", Journal of Global Mobility, Vol. 5 No. 1, pp. 22-42.



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