U.S. multinationals and the control of subsidiary employment policies

Anthony Ferner, Jacques Bélanger, Olga Tregaskis, Michael Morley, Javier Quintanilla

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28 Citations (Scopus)


The authors examine whether U.S. multinational companies (MNCs) are distinctive in the degree to which they exert direct control over policy on human resources and employment relations (HR/ER) in their foreign subsidiaries. The results confirm the distinctiveness of U.S. MNCs in their greater degree of direct control of policy, compared not only with non-U.S. firms but with every other major nationality or national grouping of MNCs: France, Germany, the Nordic group, the rest of Europe, and Japan. U.S. control of HR/ER policy is greater not just in the aggregate, but for most individual items. Finally, while levels of control over subsidiaries vary among host countries studied (Canada, Ireland, Spain, and the United Kingdom) the greater U.S. orientation to control relative to non-U.S. MNCs holds regardless of host.
Original languageEnglish
Article number4
Pages (from-to)645-669
Number of pages25
JournalIndustrial and Labor Relations Review
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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