This chapter is an examination of how Taiwanese youth use professional and ethnic social organizations to develop knowledge and career-building networks, and to seek out mentoring relationships which are helpful in gaining a leadership role. It is based on a three-year transnational ethnographic study of how Taiwanese professionals, entrepreneurs and students use their identities, ethnic and otherwise, for the construction of transnational knowledge networks. Using interviews with Taiwanese youth and the leaders of social and professional networking organizations, and participant-observation data, I examine the way in which recent graduates and young professionals and entrepreneurs use their identities, ethnic, professional and otherwise (e.g., university alumni) to prepare for global leadership roles and to construct useful professional relationships. I conclude by considering the complex role that ethnic and professional identity play in developing boundary-spanning leaders, and the role of educational, ethnic, social and professional organizations in the careers of today’s new global leaders.
Fiona Moore and Mary Yoko Brannen
This chapter provides insight into qualitative approaches to comparative human resource management (HRM) studies, focusing in particular on the anthropological comparative method. The authors present a detailed international case study to demonstrate how international HRM might usefully adopt the comparative method as a means of analysis, drawing useful conclusions from data that do not easily lend themselves to generalisation.