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Christine Bischoff and Geoffrey Wood

This chapter draws from a small but growing body of human resource management (HRM) research in Africa. Increasing attention is being paid to contextual circumstances, with attention shifting to the relationship between institutions and HRM practice, particularly drawing on the literature on comparative capitalisms and rational hierarchical accounts. This chapter further extends reflections on cultural and institutional factors influencing HRM in the sub-Saharan Africa region, including an exploration of the emerging body of research on Chinese multinational corporations in Africa.

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Christine Bischoff and Geoffrey Wood

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Christine Bischoff and Geoffrey Wood

Many developing and mature economies (including the UK and Australia) have come to accept industrial decline as an irreversible fact. Yet, although industrial production has increasingly become concentrated in a handful of economies (most notably, China and Germany), a number of other economies have managed to retain significant industrial sectors. South Africa’s relative fortunes have been mixed. Whilst the country has been very successful in the exports of minerals, food products (notably deciduous fruit and wine) and motor cars and components, many other sectors have not fared nearly as well. Historically South Africa had an extremely large clothing and textile industry; however, in recent years, many firms have been forced to close, and others to radically downsize in the face of low-cost Chinese imports.