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Development of cultural agility competencies through global mobility

Paula M. Caligiuri (International Business and Strategy Group, Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA)

Journal of Global Mobility

ISSN: 2049-8799

Article publication date: 23 May 2023

Issue publication date: 26 May 2023




This paper aims to understand how these competencies gained will help human resource (HR) leaders become more strategic about when and how to use global mobility for talent development.


In this paper, the author defines the construct of cultural agility and describes the theoretical mechanisms through which employees can gain cultural agility through culturally novel situations such as global mobility. Cultural agility enables individuals to work comfortably and effectively with people from different cultures and in situations of cultural novelty. People with cultural agility have task-management competencies (cultural minimization, adaptation and integration), self-management competencies (tolerance of ambiguity, resilience, curiosity) and relationship-management competencies (humility, relationship building and perspective taking).


This study aims at focusing on the development of cultural agility, this paper focuses on four cascading features of a culturally novel experience that can help individuals gain this competence: (1) the level of cultural novelty in the experience, (2) the readiness of an individual for that level of cultural novelty, (3) the individual's level of awareness of the cultural norms and values inherent in the culturally novel experience and (4) the level of social support offered to that individual to learn how to understand and respond in that experience.


Each feature is discussed, concluding with the implications for future research and practitioners in global mobility and talent development.



Caligiuri, P.M. (2023), "Development of cultural agility competencies through global mobility", Journal of Global Mobility, Vol. 11 No. 2, pp. 145-158.



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