Female expatriates' motivations and challenges: the case of oil and gas

Shortland, Susan (2018) Female expatriates' motivations and challenges: the case of oil and gas. Gender in Management: An International Journal, 33 (1). pp. 50-65. ISSN 1754-2413

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Abstract

Purpose
This case study is designed as a teaching exercise and to highlight key issues for organisations expatriating women within masculine industry sectors and/or into challenging international environments.
Design/methodology/approach
This case study draws together key published findings relating to women’s expatriation in the oil and gas exploration and production sector. It demonstrates a triangulated research design, drawing upon organisational policy from two oil and gas firms, semi-structured interviews with 14 Human Resource professionals and 26 female expatriates, as well as from 71 female assignees’ questionnaire responses.
Findings
Career and financial drivers underpin women’s motivations for accepting organisationally-assigned expatriation. Women expatriates engage in satisficing and career compromise. The main challenges women face in masculine industries include: access to expatriate roles due to limited female networks; family concerns; managing working time and work-life balance; and coping with loneliness.
Research limitations/implications
The oil and gas case findings are based on a cross-sectional research design. The majority of female expatriates undertook long-term assignments; limited numbers engaged in flexpatriation.
Practical implications
While organisational policy supporting expatriation does not usually address gendered expatriate concerns specifically, inclusion of interventions that are identified by women as helpful to their expatriate participation can assist in increasing expatriate gender diversity.
Originality/value
This oil and gas research case brings together and presents a summary of the motivations, problems and challenges faced by women in male-dominated expatriate environments, together with relevant theoretical approaches and organisational interventions to help us understand and increase expatriate gender diversity.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Gender; expatriates; careers; reward; networking; dual career couples
Subjects: Business and finance > Business and management
Business and finance
Depositing User: Susan Shortland
Date Deposited: 20 Oct 2017 10:29
Last Modified: 04 Jul 2018 11:28
URI: http://repository.uwl.ac.uk/id/eprint/4052

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