This edited volume builds on the previously published Self-Initiated Expatriation: Individual, Organizational, and National Perspectives, which served to give in-depth insights into the concept and the processes of self-initiated expatriation and presented different groups undertaking self-initiated foreign career moves. While more than a hundred articles on self-initiated expatriation (SIE) have been published in the meanwhile, an examination of the research questions and samples of SIEs in published SIE research shows that the role of context and its impact on SIEs’ career-related decisions and behaviors has not been explored sufficiently. This raises the question in how far existing research results are comparable.

The aim of this follow-up volume is to deepen the understanding of SIEs’ careers, focusing on the contextual influences of space, time, and institutions on the heterogeneous SIE population. More specifically, the editors aim to shed light on spatial conditions in terms of the home and host country conditions on the self-initiated expatriation experience and examine developments over time in terms of temporality of conditions and SIEs’ life-course. Moreover, the influence of the institutional context in terms of occupational, organisational, and societal specificities will be analysed. All chapters are based on strong theoretical foundations that serve to conceptualise "context" and are written by both established and emerging global academics and researchers.

Self-Initiated Expatriates in Context

contributes to conceptual clarity in the burgeoning field of SIE research by drawing attention to the importance of exploring context and, thus, boundary conditions to careers. It offers specific guidance for an improvement of future SIE-related research in order to enhance the validity of future empirical studies as well as for an improvement of managerial practice. It will be of interest to researchers, academics, practitioners, and students in the fields of international business, human resource management, organisational studies, and strategic management.

Chapters 1, 4, and 12 of this book are freely available as downloadable Open Access PDFs at https://www.taylorfrancis.com under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives (CC-BY-NC-ND) 4.0 license. 

chapter 1|16 pages


Recognising Space, Time, and Institutions in Self-Initiated Expatriation Research

part II|62 pages

Time as a Context Factor in Self-Initiated Expatriates’ International Career

chapter 7|24 pages

Self-Initiated Expatriates at Different Life and Career Stages

The Meaning of Families and Their Impact on the Expatriation and Repatriation Experiences of Self-Initiated Expatriates

part III|42 pages

Institutions as a Context Factor in Self-Initiated Expatriates’ International Mobility

chapter 9|20 pages

Understanding the Organisational Context

Self-Initiated Expatriates’ Experiences in SMEs

chapter 10|20 pages

Success of Self-Initiated Expatriates

Different Occupations, Different Realities?

part IV|35 pages

Outlook and Conclusions