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Boundary management in a boundaryless world: The impact of life domain boundary management for expatriates’ life domain conflict and enrichment

Regina Kempen (Department of Work and Organizational Psychology, University of Osnabrück, Osnabrück, Germany)
Kate Hattrup (Department of Psychology, San Diego State University, San Diego, California, USA)
Karsten Mueller (Department of Work and Organizational Psychology, University of Osnabrück, Osnabrück, Germany)

Journal of Global Mobility

ISSN: 2049-8799

Article publication date: 13 March 2017

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the relationship of flexible and permeable boundary management with both life domain conflict and life domain enrichment among expatriate workers.

Design/methodology/approach

This study utilizes a sample of 199 expatriates working in a higher education context, and analyses survey data with hierarchical regression analysis and cluster analysis.

Findings

Relationships between the permeability and the flexibility of life domains, and work-private life conflict, private life-work conflict, and work-private life enrichment were found. However, no significant results were obtained for the relationship between boundary management and private life-work enrichment. Two clusters of boundary management used by expatriates are described.

Research limitations/implications

Due to cross-sectional data, causal influences cannot be determined with confidence.

Practical implications

The findings underscore the need to consider the role-related stakeholders of expatriates, especially in the private life domain. Implications for the support of expatriates based on the boundary management clusters are discussed.

Originality/value

This is the first study analysing boundary management distinguishing between flexibility and permeability in an expatriate context.

Keywords

Citation

Kempen, R., Hattrup, K. and Mueller, K. (2017), "Boundary management in a boundaryless world: The impact of life domain boundary management for expatriates’ life domain conflict and enrichment", Journal of Global Mobility, Vol. 5 No. 1, pp. 43-59. https://doi.org/10.1108/JGM-06-2016-0029

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

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