Global mobility of expatriates (GLOMO) (H2020 MSCA) 

Content and objectives

Promoting labour mobility across Europe is a central objective of the Europe 2020 strategy, which aims to tackle increasing shortages in labour and skills throughout the EU. Cross-border labour mobility is expected to benefit individual citizens, employers and the aggregate economy. The Marie Skłodowska-Curie program ‘Global mobility of employees’ (GLOMO) is an international research project coordinated in Bamberg and is part of the Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme. It will see eight partners from across Europe generate knowledge about the global mobility phenomenon of highly skilled migrants.

GLOMO’s focus is on immigration to EU countries and mobility within the EU, and its impact on the professional sphere. It aims to make labour mobility more efficient and beneficial for all parties involved. While many valid recommendations have been developed in terms of policies on the national as well as the EU level, more detailed, scientifically sound knowledge about global labour mobility on the international societal (macro) and organisational (meso) to individual (micro) level is needed. It is necessary to identify the motives, aims, dynamics of and barriers to global labour mobility and international careers.

Thus, more expertise is needed about the impact on careers by analysis conditions prior to migration (pillar 1), the development of relevant career capital abroad (pillar 2) and the outcomes of migration (pillar 3). Overarchingly, the sense-making process (pillar 4) shapes societal and organisational structure (macro, meso) and behaviour (micro) and thus creates a new European reality (see Figure 1). This gap in knowledge prevents both policy makers and researchers from making informed decisions. GLOMO will address this gap by employing state-of-the-art research techniques in international career research. The following figure outlines all 15 sub-projects:

The GLOMO consortium from across Europe builds an ambitious and unique network of experts in the field of global labour mobility in a longer-term bid to tackle increasing labour and skills shortages in the EU. Together with the senior consortium members, 15 early-stage researchers focus on the topics of migration and expatriation. The project, which started on 1 January 2018 and runs for 48 months, will generate research on the phenomenon of global labour mobility and suggest relevant implications for individuals, organisations and European societies and economies. The project has received total funding of almost 4 million euros.

For information about GLOMO and further questions, please visit the website www.glomo.eu.

 Project goals

  • Promote and investigate the labour mobility of highly skilled migrants across Europe.
  • Systematically generate knowledge about the mobility phenomenon at the individual, organisational and macro level and its career implications (success factors, effects and added value).
  • Suggest relevant implications for individuals, organisations and European societies and economies.

 

 

Methodology

Not only will GLOMO’s cutting-edge research be interdisciplinary (including specialists from the fields of management, economics, psychology, sociology, pedagogy and law) but also it will apply qualitative and quantitative methods across all levels of analysis (micro, meso and macro). A detailed description of methods employed in each sub-project can be found at www.glomo.eu/projects/.

Social relevance and application of results

Promoting labour mobility across Europe is a central objective of the Europe 2020 strategy, which aims to tackle increasing labour and skill shortages throughout the EU. Cross-border labour mobility is expected to benefit both individual citizens, employers and the aggregate economy. In addition, intra-EU mobility is a means to foster European integration. Although migration into OECD countries increases, driven largely by people moving within the EU, migration into and within Europe continues to fall short of target levels.

Despite a favourable legal framework for mobility, migrants continue to face a wide range of obstacles that hamper cross-border labour mobility. Employment prospects for immigrants are below those of European-born workers, and overqualification, i.e. employment below skill level, is widespread in the majority of European countries. Consequently, the professional growth potential of immigrants is far from realised. For this reason, the European Commission has called for a more complete picture of recruitment difficulties and skill gaps, and the causes thereof. Little is known about international mobility patterns and the length of migration periods, as well as organisations’ retention processes for foreign employees. There is considerable scope to make existing labour mobility more efficient and beneficial for all parties involved.

GLOMO’s focus is on global migration to EU countries and mobility within the EU, and its impact on careers. The related white papers and research suggest that in the future Europe will witness even higher mobility. To ensure EU readiness for these changes, our objective is to systematically generate knowledge about the mobility phenomenon and its implications (success factors, effects and added value).

Based on the scientific findings of the 15 research sub-projects, GLOMO will create a cutting-edge interdisciplinary, multi-level framework connecting a broad variety of influences on international careers with insights into a great number of country-specific characteristics.

Drawing on the research results, GLOMO will develop an audit instrument, ‘International Employer’, for public and private non-academic organisations, which will help organisations offer high quality employment conditions to international employees. The audit will ensure that the research findings regarding the employment of an international labour force can also be transferred into organisational practice.

Bamberg competencies

The entire project is coordinated by Prof. Dr. Maike Andresen at the University of Bamberg. She benefits greatly from her experience managing several EU-funded projects over the past 15 years as well as her expertise in this research field.

Prof. Dr. Andresen and her team will build on the existing research expertise in the field of expatriation, repatriation, global careers and human resource development. New research results will be provided on aspects including:

  • The transferability of career capital between countries and career fields of assigned and self-initiated expatriates.
  • The employability of highly skilled migrants abroad, including contextual factors at the individual, organisational and national level.
  • Self-initiated expatriates’ embeddedness abroad and approaches to retain them in organisations and countries over the long term.
  • The impact of work-life balance on the success of expatriation.
  • The relevant implications for individuals, organisations and European societies and economies.

Prof. Dr. Andresen will provide trainings with other senior researchers to (further) develop early-stage researchers’ understandings of the complex multidisciplinary phenomenon of mobility. The joint research and training programme will be conducted within an interdisciplinary and intersectoral network of experts in the field.

Publications

Andresen, M., & Bergdolt, F. (2019). Individual and job-related antecedents of a global mindset: An analysis of international business travelers’ characteristics and experiences abroad. International Journal of Human Resource Management, forthcoming. doi: 10.1080/09585192.2019.1588349

Andresen, M. (2018). When at home, do as they do at home? Valuation of self-initiated repatriates’ competences in French and German management career structures. International Journal of Human Resource Management, forthcoming. doi: 10.1080/09585192.2018.1511612.

Andresen, M., Goldmann, P., & Volodina, A. (2018). Do overwhelmed expatriates intend to leave? The effects of sensory processing sensitivity, stress, and well-being on expatriates’ turnover intention. European Management Review, 15(1), 315-328. doi: 10.1111/emre.12120

Andresen, M., Dickmann, M., & Suutari, V. (2018). Typologies of internationally mobile employees. In: M. Dickmann, V. Suutari, & O. Wurtz (Eds.), The Management of Global Careers. Exploring the Rise of International Work (pp. 33-62). London: Palgrave Macmillan. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-76529-7_2

Andresen, M., & Bergdolt, F. (2018). Internationale Karrieren von Erwerbstätigen: Wege, Pfade, Systeme und Erfolge. In: S. Kauffeld, & D. Spurk (Eds.), Handbuch Karriere und Laufbahnmanagement (pp. 1-22). Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-3-662-45855-6_25-1

Selmer, J., Andresen, M., & Cerdin, J.-L. (2017). Self-initiated expatriates. In: Y. McNulty, & J. Selmer (Eds.), Research Handbook of Expatriates (pp. 187-201). Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar. doi: 10.4337/9781784718183

Andresen, M., & Bergdolt, F. (2017). A systematic literature review on the definitions of global mindset and cultural intelligence: Merging two different research streams. International Journal of Human Resource Management, 28(1), 170-195. doi:10.1080/09585192.2016.1243568

Andresen, M. (2015). What determines expatriates’ performance while abroad? The role of job embeddedness. Journal of Global Mobility,3(1), 62-82. doi: 10.1108/JGM-06-2014-0015

Andresen, M., Bergdolt, F., Margenfeld, J., & Dickmann, M. (2014). Addressing international mobility confusion: Developing definitions and differentiations for self-initiated and assigned expatriates as well as migrants. International Journal of Human Resource Management, 25(16), 2295-2318. doi: 10.1080/09585192.2013.877058

Abbiegen, bitte Interview, duz - Deutsche Universitätszeitung, Heft 02, 23.02.2018, S. 23-27.

"Glomo" sucht Bewerber aus aller Welt. Interview, Fränkischer Tag, 17.02.2018, S. 14.

EU-Forschungsprojekt sucht Doktoranden. Interview, Bayerische Rundschau, 10.02.2018, S. 20.

BayIntAn als Sprungbrett zum Projekterfolg Interview, BayFOR News, Juni 2018, S. 17.