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The management of human resources in Chinese-Western joint ventures


  • Björkman, Ingmar
  • Lu, Yuan


The recruitment, development, motivation, and retention of competent and high-performing Chinese professionals and managers is a major challenge for foreign firms operating in China. This article analyzes how local managers and professionals are managed in Western companies' manufacturing joint ventures. The investigation is based on interviews conducted in 65 Chinese-Western joint ventures. The study revealed that a variety of Western human resources management practices have been implemented in China. However, few Western companies make a total transfer to China of policies and practices from the foreign company's home country operations. This article suggests practices that will be successful in the Chinese context.

Suggested Citation

  • Björkman, Ingmar & Lu, Yuan, 1999. "The management of human resources in Chinese-Western joint ventures," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 306-324, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:worbus:v:34:y:1999:i:3:p:306-324

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    Cited by:

    1. Jintong Tang & Zhi Tang & Louis D. Marino & Yuli Zhang & Qianwen Li, 2008. "Exploring an Inverted U–Shape Relationship between Entrepreneurial Orientation and Performance in Chinese Ventures," Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, , vol. 32(1), pages 219-239, January.
    2. Hartmann, Evi & Feisel, Edda & Schober, Holger, 2010. "Talent management of western MNCs in China: Balancing global integration and local responsiveness," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 169-178, April.
    3. Björkman, Ingmar & Smale, Adam & Sumelius, Jennie & Suutari, Vesa & Lu, Yuan, 2008. "Changes in institutional context and MNC operations in China: Subsidiary HRM practices in 1996 versus 2006," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 146-158, April.
    4. Biljana Bogićević Milikić, 2009. "The Influence Of Culture On Human Resource Management Processes And Practices:The Propositions For Serbia," Economic Annals, Faculty of Economics, University of Belgrade, vol. 54(181), pages 93-118, April – J.
    5. Đorđević Biljana, 2016. "Impact of National Culture on International Human Resource Management," Economic Themes, Sciendo, vol. 54(2), pages 281-300, June.
    6. Fabian Froese, 2013. "Work values of the next generation of business leaders in Shanghai, Tokyo, and Seoul," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 30(1), pages 297-315, March.
    7. Wang, Karen Yuan & Fulop, Liz, 2007. "Managerial trust and work values within the context of international joint ventures in China," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 164-186, June.
    8. Bruton, Garry D. & Ahlstrom, David, 2003. "An institutional view of China's venture capital industry: Explaining the differences between China and the West," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 233-259, March.
    9. Chang, Eunmi, 2006. "Individual pay for performance and commitment HR practices in South Korea," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 41(4), pages 368-381, December.
    10. Kathleen Getz & Jennifer Oetzel, 2009. "MNE Strategic Intervention in Violent Conflict: Variations Based on Conflict Characteristics," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 89(4), pages 375-386, March.
    11. Hitotsuyanagi-Hansel, Azusa & Froese, Fabian Jintae & Pak, Yong Suhk, 2016. "Lessening the divide in foreign subsidiaries: The influence of localization on the organizational commitment and turnover intention of host country nationals," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 569-578.
    12. Beamish, Paul W. & Lupton, Nathaniel C., 2016. "Cooperative strategies in international business and management: Reflections on the past 50 years and future directions," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 163-175.
    13. Jing Yang & Frank Tipton & Jiatao Li, 2011. "A review of foreign business management in China," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 28(3), pages 627-659, September.
    14. Shirley Daniel & Dongyoung Lee & Wolf Reitsperger, 2014. "Raising quality consciousness among Chinese manufacturing personnel: Testing the effectiveness of performance management tools," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 31(2), pages 549-573, June.
    15. Ahlstrom, David & Bruton, Garry & Chan, Eunice S., 2001. "HRM of foreign firms in China: The challenge of managing host country personnel," Business Horizons, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 59-68.
    16. Gamble, Jos, 2006. "Introducing Western-style HRM practices to China: Shopfloor perceptions in a British multinational," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 41(4), pages 328-343, December.
    17. Veselova, A. & Latukha, M. & Veselova, L., 2018. "Talent Management in Asia-Pacific Region: How Not to Lose Global Competition for Talents," Working Papers 15120, Graduate School of Management, St. Petersburg State University.
    18. Smale, Adam & Björkman, Ingmar & Sumelius, Jennie, 2013. "Examining the differential use of global integration mechanisms across HRM practices: Evidence from China," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 232-240.
    19. Latukha, M. & Veselova, A. & Selivanovskikh, L., 2015. "Talent management practices in emerging market firms: Research agenda," Working Papers 6428, Graduate School of Management, St. Petersburg State University.

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