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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2013

Akram Al Ariss, Iris Koall, Mustafa Özbilgin and Vesa Suutari

The purpose of this editorial is to present an overview of the papers in this special issue.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this editorial is to present an overview of the papers in this special issue.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper draws on papers in this special issue.

Findings

There is a multi‐disciplinarily approach of the papers in this issue in connecting fields of management, sociology, migration, and psychology, among others, in the area of international mobility.

Originality/value

The guest editors continue their commitment, in this special issue, to expanding the field of study of migration and the careers of migrants from theoretical and methodological perspectives.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 September 2011

Iris Koall

The purpose of this paper is to describe and discuss complexity approaches of management theory, by focusing on their capacity to use efficiently contingence in…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe and discuss complexity approaches of management theory, by focusing on their capacity to use efficiently contingence in organizations. As a theoretical framework the theory of social systems (Luhmann) is used, where a difference is made between complexity reduction and condensation. Complexity reduction is related to certain functional needs to control a hierarchical system. Complexity condensation redesigns communicative structures towards participative norm development, offering discursive connectivity, and decision making in networks. It is described how heterogeneous cultures in organizations have the chance to be successful by focusing their functional needs to include, to orient, and to motivate.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper opted for discussing theoretical frameworks to reconstruct management approaches to develop towards more diversity capacity in organizations. Theory of social systems is employed as basic methodology.

Findings

The chosen research reconstructs management approaches to focus on functional imperatives of organizational systems as well as the development of functional equivalents. The logic figure of functional equivalents describes alternatives of exclusive organizational cultures. Heterogeneity in organizations is based on the redesign of communicative procedures, structures and cultures.

Research limitations/implications

The aim of the paper is diversity theory development. It offers heuristic moments which might be useful in empirical research, too. Following the suggestion homogeneity is just an outcome of certain organizational decisions to deal with contingency and complexity, it might offer practical relevance by testing the capacity to change communication and interaction patterns. The culture‐function matrix also might offer an opportunity to discuss the paradigms of organizational development towards more diversity.

Practical implications

There might be the possibility to enhance conditions of observing organizations, but the practical implications might be rather limited.

Originality/value

Using theory of social systems (Luhmann) as theory which focuses complexity traits is rather undeveloped. It could offer insights in the capacity to deal with contingency, and the attempts to suppress it. Complexity in social systems could offer a prerequisite to support the interdisciplinary research in diversity studies.

Details

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, vol. 30 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-7149

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 February 2012

Akram Al Ariss, Iris Koall, Mustafa Özbilgin and Vesa Suutari

The careers of skilled migrant workers is an under‐theorised field of research. This paper proposes a theoretical and methodological expansion of studies of careers of…

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Abstract

Purpose

The careers of skilled migrant workers is an under‐theorised field of research. This paper proposes a theoretical and methodological expansion of studies of careers of skilled migrants.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper offers a critical review of the literature on careers of skilled migrants from a multilevel approach including individual, organizational, and contextual levels.

Findings

The review leads to two key theoretical and methodological expansions: first, it demonstrates that migrant careers need to be understood as a relational construct that is at the interplay of individual and institutions and as a multi‐layer and multi‐faceted phenomenon. This approach requires the authors to explore careers in temporal and spatial contexts. The second expansion made requires the adoption of relational methodologies, as well as more reflexive methods which encourages researchers to recognize a wider range of vested interests when framing their research questions and designing their studies.

Originality/value

This paper has two key values: first, it questions the central assumptions in the management and organizational literature regarding the topic of international mobility; second, it offers a theoretical and a methodological model for future research on this topic.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 February 2013

Trine Fossland

The management literature concludes that there is an increasing need for skilled migrants in Europe. A fresh comparative OECD study highlights Norway as one of the…

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Abstract

Purpose

The management literature concludes that there is an increasing need for skilled migrants in Europe. A fresh comparative OECD study highlights Norway as one of the successful countries in terms of attracting highly qualified migrants. Regardless of this picture, many skilled migrants do not get their education recognised and face great challenges in their career development. The purpose of this paper is to contribute to this under‐researched field in management studies by focusing on skilled migrants’ careers development as a question of human capital and negotiations at a relational level.

Design/methodology/approach

This study draws on interviews with recruitment agencies and life‐story interviews with high‐skilled immigrants, attending the programme “Global future – mobilisation of talented immigrants with higher education”, initiated by the Confederation of Norwegian Business and Enterprise (NHO) in Norway.

Findings

Recruitment is a multi‐layered and relational process, involving different negotiators, negotiations and inequality regimes. Language skills, gendered expectations, networks, local knowledge and the attitude of employers play an important role in skilled migrants’ careers development and labour market participation.

Originality/value

This paper presents recent literature on highly skilled migration in Norway. By focusing on participants in a new type of recruitment programme for highly skilled migrants in Norway, the findings can give input to both employers and policy makers regarding the nature of integrating highly skilled migrants.

Article
Publication date: 1 February 2013

Kaveri Qureshi, V.J. Varghese and Filippo Osella

The purpose of this paper is to examine the careers of skilled migrants from Indian Punjab. This study complicates the normalization of skilled migration as a “win‐win”…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the careers of skilled migrants from Indian Punjab. This study complicates the normalization of skilled migration as a “win‐win” situation by examining the career trajectories of skilled migrants from the Indian Punjab who are trying to establish themselves in Britain.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper examines 20 life history interviews undertaken with skilled migrants from the Indian Punjab to Britain, in IT, media, law and hospitality industries, health and welfare professionals, and student migrants.

Findings

Skilled migrants were able to migrate on their own auspices through migration economies in Punjab. Once in Britain, however, they were directed to universities and labour markets in which they were not able to use their skills. They experienced under‐employment, devaluation of their qualifications and downward mobility, which forced them into ethnic and gendered markets within their home networks and created ambivalence about migrant success and issues of return.

Research limitations/implications

The study emphasizes the need to take a transnational lens when looking at skilled migration, address how migrants’ career trajectories are limited by racism, anti‐immigration sentiment and gender inequality, and consider temporality and uncertainty.

Originality/value

The paper raises questions concerning the ways in which rapidly changing “managed migration” policies in Britain have burdened individual migrants.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 February 2012

Lovanirina Ramboarison‐Lalao, Akram Al Ariss and Isabelle Barth

France is a country that widely relies on a skilled labour force. Nevertheless, very little is written in the management literature on the career experiences of skilled…

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Abstract

Purpose

France is a country that widely relies on a skilled labour force. Nevertheless, very little is written in the management literature on the career experiences of skilled migrants, in particular from developing countries, in France. This paper argues that in order to understand the management of skilled migrants in France, there is a need to better understand their career experiences. Therefore, the objective of this paper is to fill this knowledge gap by offering an enhanced understanding of the career experiences of Malagasy migrant physicians in France.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on the life story of 17 Malagasy migrant physicians and an interview with a Malagasy director of a private clinic who recruited Malagasy physicians to work in France, the paper sheds light on their career choices and challenges that they face in the French job market.

Findings

The results clearly highlight two career profiles: firstly, those who succeeded in working as physicians either directly upon their graduation, or throughout an “interstitial” career in nursing, a way to eventually reach their profession of physician. Second, findings show that there were participants who definitively switched to a nursing profession. For this second group, migration emerges as a challenging experience leading to talent waste and therefore to downward career mobility.

Originality/value

While literature on international careers frequently describe international mobility as being beneficial for skilled migrants, the findings yield limited support for this assumption. Instead, human capital was insufficient in explaining the career outcome of migrant physicians in France. Beyond the assumption that human capital is sufficient for undertaking a successful international experience, the paper contribute's to the literature on international careers by focusing on an under‐researched group (i.e. Malagasy physicians in France) and demonstrating the complex nature of their career experiences.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 February 2012

Riana van den Bergh and Yvonne Du Plessis

This paper aims to explore and interpret the pre‐migration and post‐migration career development and success of highly skilled professional migrant women with special…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore and interpret the pre‐migration and post‐migration career development and success of highly skilled professional migrant women with special reference to The Netherlands.

Design/methodology/approach

An exploratory approach rooted in a phenomenological perspective was followed. Two in‐depth Interactive Qualitative Analysis (IQA) focus group sessions were held with a total of 21 self‐initiated expatriate (SIE) women.

Findings

An integrated career development framework proposed in this study indicates that individual drivers such as identity, social support and life phase play a role in women's pre‐migration and post‐migration career success or exits. Identity embeddedness, host country culture, openness to foreigners and existing prejudices and stereotypes against women seems magnified for women from outside the host country.

Research implications/limitations

The research results may lack generalisability, therefore more research is encouraged to further test the proposed framework.

Practical implications

Organisations should re‐think existing systems for retaining highly skilled women migrants. Specific personnel management requirements and practical recommendations are provided for HR policy development with regard to migrant women.

Originality/value

An integrative approach and framework for understanding the career development decisions of professional and highly skilled migrant women who are also self‐initiated (SIE) is proposed. Insight is provided into the personal adjustment and professional developmental experiences of a group of women often overlooked by the research community.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 February 2013

Burcu Akan Ellis

The purpose of this paper is to assess the role that transient interpretation jobs play in the career development of skilled migrants.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess the role that transient interpretation jobs play in the career development of skilled migrants.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on interviews and correspondence with ethnic Albanian interpreters in the USA and Britain, this study analyzes the bonding and bridging effects of transient careers. Respondents include a diverse group of freelancers, as well as volunteer and professional interpreters and the interpretation experiences of the dozen Albanian skilled migrants are analyzed through a grounded theory approach.

Findings

Interpretation jobs enable highly‐skilled immigrants to initially sustain themselves abroad while adjusting to the host country. Interpretation is one area where skilled women can find a professional voice. Yet, the social capital value of interpretation exceeds its economic benefits. Migrant interpreters acquire human capital and social and cultural networks through their jobs and pass this “know‐how” to their communities through their volunteer work.

Research limitations/implications

Further research beyond the limited ethnic scope of the study is necessary to assess the links between migration and translation activism.

Practical implications

As an initial career choice for migrants, interpretation jobs remain typically transient, ad hoc and low‐wage, and the important functions they provide in economic, social and cultural capital, and their role in enabling migrants to get skilled through their migration remain unrecognized in studies of career development.

Social implications

Talented young immigrants in a transient career also get skilled through their migration process.

Originality/value

Young Albanian interpreters, invisible as immigrants and refugees, are indicative of the potential talent hidden in many such transient careers. The social, economic and cultural gains from interpretation indicate the need to view transient careers as more than short‐term strategies to make a living.

Article
Publication date: 3 February 2012

Jill Pearson, Michelle Hammond, Eithne Heffernan and Tom Turner

In many cases, immigrants work in jobs that are incommensurate with their qualifications and work experience. The aim of this study is to examine the experience of this…

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Abstract

Purpose

In many cases, immigrants work in jobs that are incommensurate with their qualifications and work experience. The aim of this study is to examine the experience of this “talent waste” in Polish immigrants working in the Irish labour market.

Design/methodology/approach

The study used a mixed method approach. First, 309 Polish immigrants were surveyed about their employment experiences since moving to Ireland. Second, 12 skilled Polish immigrants – those with third level qualifications – were interviewed. Interviews were semi‐structured and focused on the factors leading to their underemployment and how they responded to it psychologically.

Findings

The interviews revealed that immigrants to Ireland reported fewer barriers to skilled employment than immigrants in other research. Also, most had not sought employment that would utilise their qualifications when they first moved to Ireland. A typology of four psychological responses to employment status was put forth based on immigrant sense of professional identity and experience of dissonance.

Practical implications

The results of the study have important implications for employers, academic institutions, government representatives and skilled immigrants themselves.

Originality/value

Unlike other studies in this area, this study provides rich description and unique insight into the experiences of skilled Polish immigrants to Ireland over a number of years, as well as large‐scale survey evidence of this group of migrant workers.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 February 2012

William Harvey

This paper seeks to address two research questions: first, to what extent do highly skilled migrants intend to make personal business and financial investments in their…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to address two research questions: first, to what extent do highly skilled migrants intend to make personal business and financial investments in their home countries, and second, what factors influence them to invest in their home countries?

Design/methodology/approach

The results are based on face‐to‐face and telephone interviews which took place between September, 2008 and March, 2009 with 64 highly skilled British migrants working in Vancouver, Canada. Respondents were asked a combination of open‐ and closed‐ended questions.

Findings

The results of this study find that the vast majority of respondents are not investing in or intending to return to their home country, which indicates that they contributing to brain circulation in a limited extent.

Practical implications

The paper argues that governments and organisations in the home country can play an important role in facilitating brain circulation in Europe.

Originality/value

Much of the academic literature suggests that the brain drain has now transformed into brain gain. The findings of this study do not support this shift because most of the sample of British expatriates in Vancouver are not intending to invest in or return to Europe. This is significant because highly skilled migrants could be better utilised as resources by European governments and organisations.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

Keywords

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