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American Multinationals in EuropeManaging Employment Relations Across National Borders$
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Phil Almond and Anthony Ferner

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780199274635

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199274635.001.0001

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Workforce Diversity Policies

Workforce Diversity Policies

Chapter:
(p.146) 8 Workforce Diversity Policies
Source:
American Multinationals in Europe
Author(s):

Anthony Ferner (Contributor Webpage)

Michael Morley

Michael Muller-Camen

Lourdes Susaeta

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199274635.003.0008

Workforce diversity is a defining issue of international HR policy transfer in US multinationals. Demographic characteristics, socio-political developments, and the evolution of the legal framework have created a distinctive constellation of diversity agendas in the US. This chapter explores the way in which these agendas were transferred by US companies to their subsidiaries, in host business systems with varying demographic patterns and legal traditions that were not necessarily consonant with American diversity practice. The case studies reveal that there was a frequent lack of fit between the diversity agendas of US multinationals and host-country institutional frameworks, provoking considerable resistance from subsidiaries. However, there was considerable variation in subsidiary responses to diversity, partly explained by structural factors, such as the degree of international integration of operations, and partly by the more contingent strategic and political choices of actors at different levels of the multinational.

Keywords:   demographic patterns, legal traditions, US multinationals, HR transfer, institutional framework

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