The Role of Expatriate Managers in Global Economic Restructuring: Some Key Components and Constraints
This paper is about the role, place and function of senior expatriate managers in the "globalisation" process. Senior expatriate managers are considered by Transnational Corporations (TNCs) to possess high levels of technical and business expertise and are rewarded accordingly. They form the upper echelons of the core workforces of TNCs and are dispatched to foreign geographies to implement corporate globalisation strategies. The paper is also about some aspects of the impact of new technology and how this may affect expatriate managers, and expatriation policies of TNCs. It reflects dimensions of recently completed research, and presents findings and some preliminary suggestions. The paper points to a conceptual necessity to deconstruct the notion of "expertise" in order to understand the specific contribution of expatriate managers to globalisation; and to the possibility that these global managers may be playing an "indispensable" role in the management of the new phase of capitalist development. The paper hopes to demonstrate that the expatriation of senior executives attached to TNCs cannot be fully explained without an understanding of the nature of the role that these managers are playing in the globalisation process, and what components of this role are open to change.
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