We analyze whether and how young researchers’ (inter)national mobility affects their later appointment success. We use data on 330 researchers from business and economics in Germany, Austria and the German-speaking part of Switzerland and measure appointment success by (a) the time it takes a young researcher to get tenure and by (b) whether the researcher succeeded in getting tenure at a highly ranked institution. We find that international mobility is positively related to the likelihood of getting tenure at a highly ranked institution whereas pre-tenure national mobility is negatively related to both measures of appointment success. The latter effect stems from the period when post-doctoral pre-tenure national mobility was uncommon and created a negative stigma – an effect that vanishes after the introduction of Juniorprofessorships.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Formal mentoring refers to researchers that took part or still take part in a formal mentoring program set up e. g. by a university. Informal mentoring refers to researchers which are not involved in a formal mentoring program, but rather state that they have an informal mentoring relationship such that the mentor (which is not their academic advisor) and the researcher have not been formally assigned to each other, but instead the mentoring relationship emerged “informally” and evolved gradually over time.
Controlling for the time a researcher has spent working as a practitioner (in months) between having obtained the doctorate and having received tenure as robustness check does not change our results on the relation between (inter)national mobility and time to tenure. The same is true for using the duration of international mobility in months instead of dummy variables. All results of the different robustness checks are available from the authors upon request.
When using the duration of international mobility in months instead of dummy variables, the negative effect of national mobility on the likelihood of getting tenure at a highly ranked institution disappears. All other results remain unchanged.
As a further robustness check, we alternatively chose “2001” and “2002” as potential cut-off points for the presumed regime change. While many of our results remain robust to this variation in the cut-off year, having obtained a PhD either before 2000 or in 2000 or later seems to mark the most pronounced regime change.
Controlling for the time a researcher has spent working as a practitioner (in months) between having obtained the doctorate and having received tenure does not change these results. Further, the results are robust when using the duration of international mobility in months instead of the different dummy variables.
The results on national mobility are robust when using the duration of international mobility in months instead of the different dummy variables. For international mobility we still find the positive effect, however this is now significant for researchers who obtained their doctorate before 2000 and not after.
Albers, Sönke. 2011. Esteem indicators: membership in editorial boards or honorary doctorates – discussion of “quantitative and qualitative rankings of scholars” by Rost and Frey. Schmalenbach Business Review 63(1):92–98.
Backes-Gellner, Uschi. 2011. Rankings upon rankings – and no end in sight – discussion of “quantitative and qualitative rankings of scholars” by Rost and Frey. Schmalenbach Business Review 63(1):99–108.
Bäker, Agnes. 2015. Non-tenured post-doctoral researchers’ job mobility and research output: an analysis of the role of research discipline, department size and coauthors. Research Policy 44(3):634–650.
Bailyn, Lotte. 2003. Academic careers and gender equity: lessons learned from MIT. Gender, Work and Organization 10(2):137–153.
Bedeian, Arthur G., David E. Cavazos, James G. Hunt, and Lawrence R. Jauch. 2010. Doctoral degree prestige and the academic marketplace: a study of career mobility within the management discipline. Academy of Management Learning & Education 9(1):11–25.
Bolli, Thomas, and Jörg Schläpfer. 2015. Job mobility, peer effects, and research productivity in economics. Scientometrics 104(3):629–650.
Chlosta, Kristin, and Kerstin Pull. 2010. The incentive effects of appointment tournaments in German higher education. Schmalenbach Business Review 62:378–400.
Connelly, Brian L., S. Trevis Certo, R. Duane Ireland, and Christopher R. Reutzel. 2011. Signaling theory: a review and assessment. Journal of Management 37(1):39–67.
Cox, David R. 1972. Regression models and life-tables. Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, Series B (Methodological) 34(2):187–220.
Dickmann, Michael, and Harris Hilary. 2005. Developing career capital for global careers: the role of international assignments. Journal of World Business 40(4):399–408.
Dickmann, Michael, Noeleen Doherty, Timothy Mills, and Chris Brewster. 2008. Why do they go? Individual and corporate perspectives on the factors influencing the decision to accept an international assignment. The International Journal of Human Resource Management 19(4):731–751.
Fernandez-Zubieta, Ana, Aldo Geuna, and Cornelia Lawson. 2015. Productivity pay-offs from academic mobility: should I stay or should I go? Industrial and Corporate Change 25(1):91–114. doi:10.1093/icc/dtv034.
Fiedler, Marina, and Isabell M. Welpe. 2008. If you don’t know what port you are sailing to, no wind is favourable. Appointment preferences of management professors. Schmalenbach Business Review 60(1):4–31.
Fiedler, Marina, Isabell M. Welpe, Kathrin Lindlbauer, and Kathrin Sattler. 2008. Denn wer hat, dem wird gegeben: Publikationsproduktivität des BWL-Hochschullehrernachwuchses und deren wissenschaftlicher Betreuer. Zeitschrift für Betriebswirtschaft 78(5):477–508.
Fiedler, Marina, Isabell M. Welpe, and Arnold Picot. 2006. Terra Incognita. Forschungsleistung und Qualifizierungswege des deutschsprachigen Hochschullehrernachwuchses für Betriebswirtschaftslehre. Die Betriebswirtschaft 66(4):464–486.
Fiedler, Marina, Isabell M. Welpe, and Arnold Picot. 2008. Young researchers in the field of management: assessing the relation between the work environment for creativity and job satisfaction, self-confidence, and publication productivity. Zeitschrift für Betriebswirtschaft 58:91–113. Special Issue “Economics and Management of Education”.
Franzoni, Chiara, Guiseppe Scellato, and Paula Stephan. 2014. The mover’s advantage: the superior performance of migrant scientists. Economics Letters 122(1):89–93.
Frey, Bruno S., and Katja Rost. 2010. Do rankings reflect research quality? Journal of Applied Economics 13(1):1–38.
Fries-Britt, Sharon. 2000. Developing support networks and seeking answers to questions. In Succeeding in an academic career, ed. Mildred Garcia, 39–56. Westport: Greenwood.
Heining, Jörg, Jürgen Jerger, and Jörg Lingens. 2007. Success in the academic labour market for economists – the german experience, working papers in business Nr. 422, University of Regensburg
Joecks, Jasmin, Kerstin Pull, and Uschi Backes-Gellner. 2014. Childbearing and (female) research productivity: a personnel economics perspective on the leaky pipeline. Journal of Business Economics 84(4):517–530.
Kahn, Shulamit. 1992. Gender differences in academic career paths of economists. The American Economic Review 83(2):52–56.
Krapf, Matthias. 2011. Research evaluation and journal quality weights. Journal of Business Economics 81(1):5–27.
Kyvik, Svein, Berit Karseth, Jan A. Remme, and Stuart Blume. 1999. International mobility among nordic doctoral students. Higher Education 38(4):379–400.
Lähteenmäki, Satu, and Anni Paalumäki. 1993. The retaining and mobility motivations of key personnel: dependencies in the Finnish business environment. International Journal of Human Resource Management 4(2):377–406.
Lane, William R., Stephen W. Looney, and James W. Wansley. 1986. An application of the Cox proportional hazard model to bank failure. Journal of Banking and Finance 10(4):511–531.
Long, J. Scott, and Robert McGinnis. 1985. The effects of the mentor on the academic career. Scientometrics 7(3–6):255–280.
Lunn, Mary, and Don McNeil. 1995. Applying Cox regression to competing risks. Biometrics 51(2):524–532.
Melin, Göran. 2004. Postdoc abroad: inherited scientific contacts or establishment of new networks? Research Evaluation 13(2):95–102.
Muschallik, Julia, and Kerstin Pull. 2015. Mentoring in higher education: Does it enhance mentees’ research productivity? Education Economics 24(2):210–223. doi:10.1080/09645292.2014.997676.
Pellens, Maikel. 2012. The motivations of scientists as drivers of international mobility decisions, working paper, University of Leuven.
Reinartz, Werner. 2011. Discussion of “quantitative and qualitative rankings of scholars”: feeling good or feeling right? Schmalenbach Business Review 63(1):109–114.
Richardson, Julia, and Steve McKenna. 2002. Leaving and experiencing: Why academics expatriate and how they experience expatriation. Career Development International 7(2):67–78.
Rost, Katja, and Bruno S. Frey. 2011. Quantitative and qualitative rankings of scholars. Schmalenbach Business Review 63(1):63–91.
Schulze, Günther G., Susanne Warning, and Christian Wiermann. 2008. What and how long does it take to get tenure? The case of economics and business administration in Austria, Germany and Switzerland. German Economic Review 9(4):473–505.
Spence, Michael. 1973. Job market signaling. The Quarterly Journal of Economics 87(3):355–374.
Stahl, Günther, and Jean-Luc Cerdin. 2004. Global careers in French and German multinational corporations. Journal of Management Development 23(9):885–902.
The authors gratefully acknowledge financial support from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (program: “Wissenschaftsökonomie”, grant number: 01PW11008). The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research had no impact on study design, collection, analysis or interpretation of the data or the writing of the manuscript. We thank the associate editor and anonymous referee. Also, we are grateful for comments by the participants of the Ökonomisches Kolloqium at IAAEU in Trier 2012, the Fachtagung Innovation, Leistungsmessung und Anreizsysteme in Wissenschaft und Wirtschaft in Munich 2012, the 16th Colloquium on Personnel Economics (COPE) 2013, the 13th Annual Meeting of the European Academy of Management (EURAM) 2013, the 73rd Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management (AOM) 2013, and the XV. Symposium zur Ökonomischen Analyse der Unternehmung (GEABA) 2014. Annika Dehn, Sebastian Kropp, Alessandra Lehmann, Yannick Monschauer, and Manuela Wösle provided excellent research assistance.
About this article
Cite this article
Bäker, A., Breuninger, S., Muschallik, J. et al. Time to Go? (Inter)National Mobility and Appointment Success of Young Academics. Schmalenbach Bus Rev 17, 401–421 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s41464-016-0010-y
- Academic Mobility
- Career Success
- Human Capital
- Social Capital