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Title: A holistic investigation of cross-cultural interactions : the perspective of Taiwanese expatriate management
Author: Yi-Hung, Lin
Awarding Body: Lancaster University
Current Institution: Lancaster University
Date of Award: 1997
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This thesis investigates the experiential learning of Taiwanese expatriates and their adjustment to overseas environments. The distinguishing feature of this thesis is its use of qualitative methodologies, such as participant observation and in-depth interviews to look at multiple realities of social and cultural phenomenon. In order to understand the complex issues related to Taiwanese expatriate management, six perspectives of cultural development were examined to provide a holistic view Of how Chinese thought and values, derived from Confucian ideology, influence managerial practice. Having described cultural development in Chinese societies, this research goes further to examine issues involved in expatriate management. Previous research found that expatriates’ managerial practices were differentiated by their cultural norms and suggests the importance of being aware of cultural diversity in a multicultural work setting. However, the literature does not provide a satisfactory explanation of the nature of cultural interactions in expatriate management. This is investigated here using a qualitative methodology, together With a synergistic approach and the use of grounded theory. Four field studies were conducted as follows: • In the first field study, Taiwanese expatriate management was explored from a general perspective by interviewing Taiwanese HR managers and training consultants. This field study identifies the attitudes and practices of Taiwanese multinationals and the government regarding expatriate management. • In the second field study, Taiwanese expatriates were interviewed upon their arrival in the host country, Britain. The area of research investigated Taiwanese expatriates’ initial impressions and psychological adjustments to the host country. lii • The third field study focused on Taiwanese expatriates’ experiences of long-term assignments in Europe. Expatriates who had been overseas for longer than a year were interviewed which integrated the previous two field studies of Taiwanese expatriate management from the perspectives of the parent company and expatriate themselves. • In the fourth field study, the same issues were explored further from a different perspective namely through longitudinal participant observation o f a multicultural project team operating in Europe. Through reflection of the overall research, themes and models were developed in the process of research which provides the theoretical framework for this thesis and future research. Finally, evaluation of this thesis was discussed from the methodological and theoretical, points of view which led to suggestions for future research. It is not my intention to generalise the findings from this thesis as the general themes for the overall expatriate management. However, through the specific example of Taiwanese expatriate management , this thesis provides one view of the multiple phenomena of social realities in expatriate management, I hope those who are interested in this thesis derive as much enjoyment from reading it as I did in doing the research for this thesis.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available