Multinational firms from emerging economies in Africa: implications for research and practice in human resource management

Fang Lee Cooke, Geoffrey Wood, Frank Horwitz

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialResearchpeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


Although Africa's return to growth in the 2000s, coterminous with significantly increasing foreign direct investment, has led to renewed interest in Human Resource Management (HRM) on the continent, much of the literature has tended to focus on cross-culturally imposed variations in HRM and employment practices and the impact of foreign investment from the developed world. Policy and strategy in managing human resources, most notably those from emerging market multinational enterprises (MNEs), has been neglected. Opening this special issue, this article highlights present trends and debates, and reviews more recent contributions to knowledge of this area. Our analysis critically evaluates the use of new categories of expatriate workers including semi-skilled and relatively unskilled home country expatriates deployed in emerging market MNEs in African countries, the uneven nature of regulation, structural changes in African economies, and the consequences of national institutional restraints for multinational HRM. We identify an agenda for further research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2653-2675
Number of pages23
JournalThe International Journal of Human Resource Management
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2015


  • emerging economies
  • expatriate management
  • foreign direct investment
  • HRM in Africa
  • labour standards
  • MNE

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