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Article
Publication date: 29 April 2021

Barbara Myers, Kaye Thorn and Noeleen Doherty

Research into self-initiated expatriation (SIE) has increased exponentially, although the focus of these investigations has been on professional workers, and little has…

Abstract

Purpose

Research into self-initiated expatriation (SIE) has increased exponentially, although the focus of these investigations has been on professional workers, and little has been gender specific. The purpose of this research therefore is to explore the career and personal motivations for SIE through the novel lens of older women. In this exploratory study, SIE and socio-emotional selectivity motivation theories (SSTs) are used, in addition to the Kaleidoscope Career Model (KCM), to understand the reasons these women have taken this path.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper employs a qualitative methodology, drawing on in-depth life story interviews with 21 women aged 50 or more who had taken a SIE. A five-step narrative process using a story-telling approach was the method of analysis.

Findings

The findings show important contradictions to the extant literature. Career dissatisfaction and escape are key motivations for these women. Further, contrary to SST, these women were seeking novelty–new places and new experiences. These women were also seeking authenticity as suggested by KCM, but also challenge was to the fore–not in the career domain, but in the personal domain. Their motivations for SIE extend beyond the current evidence base and understanding of the phenomena.

Originality/value

The contributions include new insights into the motivational drivers for SIE for these older women and the importance of timing as facilitators of SIE. The SIE nomenclature is broadened through the inclusion of older women and beyond professional spheres. An initial framework of a more integrated model is developed from this exploratory study and presented as a basis for beginning to understand the phenomenon of older women undertaking SIE.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article
Publication date: 15 February 2013

Noeleen Doherty, Julia Richardson and Kaye Thorn

This special issue seeks to scope the past, present and future study of those individuals who independently journey abroad for work – the self‐initiated expatriate – a…

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Abstract

Purpose

This special issue seeks to scope the past, present and future study of those individuals who independently journey abroad for work – the self‐initiated expatriate – a topic which is now attracting increasing attention among management scholars and practitioners alike.

Design/methodology/approach

This introductory paper takes the form of a brief commentary of the development of the field and a synthesis of the papers in this special edition.

Findings

Beginning in the late 1990s with a slow trickle of papers exploring the experiences of individuals who had initiated their own expatriation, our understanding of self‐initiated expatriates (SIEs) and self‐initiated expatriation (SIE) has developed exponentially. This development has given rise to a growing awareness of this form of mobility as a potentially powerful force in the increasingly varied global labour market. Yet, as this special issue will argue, there is still a range of conceptual, theoretical and empirical challenges in the study of SIEs, not least of which is a lack of clarity in how the term is used and understood. Despite the expansion of the field, it has hitherto focused primarily on the experiences of professional SIEs moving from and between developed countries. The papers in this issue therefore, address the need for both greater conceptual clarity and for greater empirical diversity.

Originality/value

The papers included in this special issue each address fundamental issues in the study of the SIE population and offer perspectives that further our understanding of this group and their experiences.

Details

Career Development International, vol. 18 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1362-0436

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Article
Publication date: 15 February 2013

Noeleen Doherty, Julia Richardson and Kaye Thorn

This paper aims to move towards clarification of the self‐initiated expatriate/expatriation construct with the aim of extending and deepening theory development in the field.

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3848

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to move towards clarification of the self‐initiated expatriate/expatriation construct with the aim of extending and deepening theory development in the field.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing on Suddaby's think piece on construct clarity, this paper applies his proposed four elements; definitional clarity, scope conditions, relationships between constructs and coherence, in order to clarify the SIE construct.

Findings

The discussion examines the “problem of definition” and its impact on SIE scholarship. The spatial, temporal and value‐laden constraints that must be considered by SIE scholars are expounded, and the links between SIE research and career theory are developed. From this, potential research agendas are proposed.

Research limitations/implications

This is a conceptual piece which, rather than giving precise research data, encourages further thinking in the field.

Originality/value

Although the definitional difficulties of SIEs have been identified in previous literature, this is the first attempt to clarify the boundaries of SIE and its interconnectedness with other related constructs.

Details

Career Development International, vol. 18 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1362-0436

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2005

James Airth and Noeleen Doherty

This article summarises two evaluations of arrest referral schemes in a county force where support services are offered as an alternative to case disposal under the…

Abstract

This article summarises two evaluations of arrest referral schemes in a county force where support services are offered as an alternative to case disposal under the criminal justice system. Random samples of individuals who had accessed the schemes were selected for analysis. Strong success was indicated in the drug arrest referral scheme evaluation and the alcohol arrest referral project received a positive outcome.

Details

Safer Communities, vol. 4 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-8043

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Article
Publication date: 17 August 2010

Noeleen Doherty, Michael Dickmann and Timothy Mills

The paper seeks to explore the career attitudes, motivations and behaviours of young people in initial vocational education and training (IVET) in Europe.

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Abstract

Purpose

The paper seeks to explore the career attitudes, motivations and behaviours of young people in initial vocational education and training (IVET) in Europe.

Design/methodology/approach

This exploratory web‐based survey was conducted during the European year for mobility. Drawing on existing research on the motivators of international careers, it explored young people's perceptions of barriers and incentives to mobility.

Findings

The study differentiates “natives” (those who did not go abroad) and “boundary crossers” (those who did). Cultural exposure, travel and a desire for adventure are key motivators. Counter‐intuitively, those who chose not to go abroad are significantly more positive about the potential for professional development but are significantly more concerned for personal safety. Some maturational trends are apparent.

Research limitations/implications

The study is limited to a “European‐wide” perspective from a sample, which had access to the web survey. Further research could usefully explore differences in attitude and mobility behaviours within and across specific European countries.

Practical implications

Factors restricting boundary‐crossing behaviour may be rooted in aspects of psychological mobility such as perceived benefits of the experience, self‐confidence and risk aversion. This has practical implications for policy makers and career development for early career foreign didactic experiences where support for placements may need to focus more on psychological mobility, an area currently under‐researched.

Originality/value

This exploratory paper provides data to examine the mobility behaviours among young people in IVET, distinguishing between “natives” and “boundary crossers”. It presents an important attempt to more fully understand the dynamics of mobility attitudes and behaviours among young people.

Details

Career Development International, vol. 15 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1362-0436

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 1993

Noeleen Doherty, Shaun Tyson and Claire Viney

The management of the job‐loss situation is becoming of centralimportance to top management and human resource executives in thecurrent climate of redundancy. The current…

Abstract

The management of the job‐loss situation is becoming of central importance to top management and human resource executives in the current climate of redundancy. The current nature of severance packages and the provision of outplacement may be interpreted as a move towards normative practices within the policy making of many UK organizations. Reports on the results of a recent survey of over 600 UK organizations. The survey covered organizational perspectives on redundancies and the use of outplacement in the event of redundancy. The results indicated a change in corporate values in the 1990s. There appeared to be a move towards normative practices in the management of redundancy and in particular in the use of outplacement as a moderator of the potentially detrimental impact of the redundancy situation.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 22 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 1998

Noeleen Doherty

Explores redundancy as a significant and pervasive outcome of organisational change. Argues that the need to manage the redundancy transition has provoked the development…

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Abstract

Explores redundancy as a significant and pervasive outcome of organisational change. Argues that the need to manage the redundancy transition has provoked the development of new HRM policies and practices. Highlights that interventions such as outplacement are often used by companies with little rigorous evaluation of their utility or benefit, yet their continued proliferation would suggest that they appear to have assumed intrinsic credibility and value. Maintains that while the pluralist, contingent nature of the organisational change and individual transition issues are recognised, many organisations appear to resort to normative methods when faced with the challenge of managing the human resource issues associated with redundancy. Argues that the pervasive and complex nature of current changes dictates not only the need for a better understanding of the practices that exist but also an exploration of how HRM theory can contribute to and enhance that understanding.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 27 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 1991

Shaun Tyson and Noeleen Doherty

Research undertaken to examine the relationship between personalityand careers is reported. A study of the personality characteristics of204 executives who had been made…

Abstract

Research undertaken to examine the relationship between personality and careers is reported. A study of the personality characteristics of 204 executives who had been made redundant compared 16PF profiles with those of similar populations and it is argued that there are identifiable characteristics amongst the redundant sample, which show them to be more creative and unconventional, but that they also possess a lack of social skills and poor organisational survival abilities. This suggests it is both personality and “social fit” which are significant in suffering an enforced job change. Further research drew on the experiences of 299 executives who had been made redundant. This study explored their reactions to the job loss event and their subsequent learning from experience, in terms of “psychological growth” and the changing patterns of their careers. This suggested that there is a wide variation in the response to the enforced job change and that the personality factors associated with this type of executive may strongly influence their subsequent career paths.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 20 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article
Publication date: 7 October 2014

Christian Yao, Kaye Thorn and Noeleen Doherty

The purpose of this paper is to explore the dynamic nature of boundaryless careers of Chinese early career corporate expatriates. It also investigates the demographic and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the dynamic nature of boundaryless careers of Chinese early career corporate expatriates. It also investigates the demographic and contextual factors influencing individual perceived career mobility.

Design/methodology/approach

Qualitative, semi-structured interviews with 31 Chinese corporate expatriates were conducted and a template analysis approach was used to analyze the data.

Findings

Results suggest that Chinese early career corporate expatriates’ perceptions of boundaries as facilitating or limiting career mobility change over time. Changing boundary properties are found to be linked to the salience of Chinese cultural values, demographics and career/life stages. Based on expatriates’ narratives, this study highlights how these demographic and contextual factors shape domains of career boundarylessness.

Originality/value

Using an under-researched sample of Chinese corporate expatriates, this paper contributes to the conceptualization of boundaryless careers identifying the changing nature of the boundaries that facilitate or restrict mobility over time. The study calls for the use of combined, multi-dimensional approaches incorporating individual agency, organizational and cultural factors to understand individual career development.

Details

Career Development International, vol. 19 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1362-0436

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 15 February 2013

Lan Cao, Andreas Hirschi and Jürgen Deller

The authors sought to explain why and how protean career attitude might influence self‐initiated expatriates' (SIEs) experiences positively. A mediation model of cultural…

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3243

Abstract

Purpose

The authors sought to explain why and how protean career attitude might influence self‐initiated expatriates' (SIEs) experiences positively. A mediation model of cultural adjustment was proposed and empirically evaluated.

Design/methodology/approach

Data from 132 SIEs in Germany containing measures of protean career attitude, cultural adjustment, career satisfaction, life satisfaction, and intention to stay in the host country were analysed using path analysis with a bootstrap method.

Findings

Empirical results provide support for the authors' proposed model: the positive relations between protean career attitude and the three expatriation outcomes (career satisfaction, life satisfaction and intention to stay in the host country) were mediated by positive cross‐cultural adjustment of SIEs.

Research limitations/implications

All data were cross‐sectional from a single source. The sample size was small and included a large portion of Chinese participants. The study should be replicated with samples in other destination countries, and longitudinal research is suggested.

Practical implications

By fostering both a protean career attitude in skilled SIE employees and their cultural adjustment, corporations and receiving countries could be able to retain this international workforce better in times of talent shortage.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the scarce research on the conceptual relatedness of protean career attitude and SIEs, as well as to acknowledging the cultural diversity of the SIE population.

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