Edited by Craig C. Julian, Zafar U. Ahmed and Junqian Xu
Although there is a large collection of studies examining the transfer of organizational practices in multinational companies (MNCs) (for example Geppert and Mayer, 2006; Edwards et al., 2007; Gamble and Huang, 2009), significant gaps still remain in our understanding of the subject. In particular, there exists little knowledge about human resource management (HRM) practices in the MNCs from emerging economies such as China. Although that substantial research has been done on foreign-invested MNCs in China (Cooke, 2009), it was not until ten years ago that Chinese outward direct investment (ODI) and Chinese MNCs started to attract scholars' attention (for example Cai, 1999; Nolan and Zhang, 2002, 2003). Up to now, most extant studies have focused on exploring the microeconomic and institutional determinants of Chinese ODI (for example Buckley et al., 2007) and on portraying the distinct characteristics of Chinese MNCs as a 'latecomer' (Child and Rodrigues, 2005; Peng, 2005; Cooke, 2008). More recent studies have taken a further step by examining the relationship among motivation, entry mode and performance of Chinese investment (for example Chen and Young, 2009; Cui and Jiang, 2009; Deng, 2009). To date, what remains little explored is how Chinese MNCs manage their subsidiaries in a cross-national context, and how the organizational strategies and practices of these firms are constructed and implemented. As such, addressing this pertinent research agenda is the major focus of our chapter.
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