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Yuan Li and Jianmin Sun

With the increasing number of dual-earner households, work–family conflict has become more and more apparent and results in negative consequences, such as job burnout. This study examines the mechanism in the effect of work–family conflict (namely, work–family interference) on job burnout and explores the relationships among gender-role attitude, work–family conflict, and job burnout. Results indicate that when work interferes with family, greater work–family conflict induces higher job burnout (namely, higher emotional exhaustion, reduced personal accomplishment and depersonalization). The positive relationship between work–family conflict and job burnout is stronger for individuals who have an equal gender-role attitude than for those who have a traditional gender-role attitude. This study demonstrates the importance of gender-role attitude and enriches the empirical study of work–family issues. Implications for management practices and limitations of this study are discussed.

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Litao Lu, Li Yuan and Feng Gao

The chapter examines the development of migrant labour and its social and educational consequences. It argues that improving the living conditions and raising the educational levels of migrant workers and their children is now a pressing social responsibility for both government and society, because of the implications for the economic and social stability of the country.

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Weiwen Li, Yuan Lu and Danming Lin

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Klaus E. Meyer, Yuan Ding, Jing Li and Hua Zhang

State-owned (SO) enterprises are subject to more complex institutional pressures in host countries than private firms. These institutional pressures arise from a weak legitimacy of “state ownership” in some countries, which arises from a combination of ideological conflicts, perceived threats to national security, and claimed unfair competitive advantage due to support by the home country government. These institutional pressures directed specifically at SO firms induce them to adapt their foreign entry strategies to reduce potential conflicts and to enhance their legitimacy. Testing hypotheses derived from this theoretical argument for subsidiaries of listed Chinese firms, we find that SO firms adapt mode and control decisions differently from private firms to the conditions in host countries, and these differences are larger where pressures for legitimacy on SO firms are stronger. These findings not only extend institutional theory to better explain differential effects on different entrants to an organizational field, but demonstrate how foreign investors of idiosyncratic origins may proactively build legitimacy in host societies.

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Jing Li, Klaus E. Meyer, Hua Zhang and Yuan Ding

Firms and governments operate in broad networks in which the home government and its diplomatic service are a critical node – or a ‘‘referral point’’ – between firms and potential partners in foreign locations. Thus diplomatic relations between countries matter for the choice of foreign investment location. Using a network perspective, we argue that the extent to which good diplomatic relations induce firms to invest in friendly host countries depends on their political connections to home governments. Those with stronger ties to home governments can better access and leverage intergovernmental diplomatic connections, thus benefiting potentially from enhanced access to information, reduced political risks, and increased legitimacy. Such ability of politically connected firms is more useful where weak institutional impartiality in the host country inhibits neutral treatment of foreign investors. Empirically, using overseas investment location decisions by Chinese firms, we find that the types of home government ties (i.e., whether they are organizational or personal and whether those relationships are with central or local governments) and the impartiality of host institutions are both important contingencies affecting firms’ utilization of diplomatic relations. We discuss the implications of our study to research on network theory, political ties, and internationalization of emerging market firms.