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International human resource management: An Australian perspective


International human resource management (IHRM) is slowly emerging as a field of academic enquiry. There is, however, a dearth of case study material which documents IHRM strategies and experiences of companies-particularly companies which do not have their home base in the United States. This paper reviews current IHRM literature and reports the results of a recent study of four companies operating internationally from Australia: two are Australian-owned; one is an Australian subsidiary of a multinational oil company and the fourth is a regional division of a multinational automobile manufacturer. For the collection of data, a case study approach was used, with structured interviews of each company's personnel director, expatriate line managers (including returned managers and foreign nationals currently in Australia) and spouses. These case studies are analysed and the extent to which they contribute to the international human resource management literature is examined.

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The authors would like to thank the companies which participated in the study, and Mary Anderson, Hugh Davies, and Helen De Cieri for comments on earlier versions of the paper.

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Dowling, P.J., Welch, D.E. International human resource management: An Australian perspective. Asia Pacific J Manage 6, 39–65 (1988).

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  • Automobile Manufacturer
  • Study Material
  • Study Approach
  • Management Literature
  • Personnel Director