From dilemmatic struggle to legitimized indifference: expatriates' host country language learning and its impact on the expatriate-HCE relationship

Zhang, Ling Eleanor and Harzing, Anne-Wil ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1509-3003 (2016) From dilemmatic struggle to legitimized indifference: expatriates' host country language learning and its impact on the expatriate-HCE relationship. Journal of World Business, 51 (5) . pp. 774-786. ISSN 1090-9516 (doi:10.1016/j.jwb.2016.06.001)

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Abstract

We address the lack of knowledge concerning the role of host country languages in multinational corporations based on an inductive qualitative study involving 70 interviews with Nordic expatriates and host country employees (HCE) in China.

Building on the strongly discrepant views of expatriates and HCEs, we demonstrate how expatriates’ willingness to learn and use the host country language lead to different types of expatriate-HCE relationships, ranging from harmonious to distant or segregated. In doing so, we emphasize the subtle and fragile connection between expatriates’ attitude towards HCEs’ mother tongue and trust formation in addition to the construction of superiority-inferiority relationships.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Available online 16 June 2016
Research Areas: A. > Business School > International Management and Innovation > International Business group
Item ID: 19983
Notes on copyright: © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).
Useful Links:
Depositing User: Anne-Wil Harzing
Date Deposited: 10 Jun 2016 10:50
Last Modified: 13 Dec 2019 22:13
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/19983

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