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The psychological contract within the international and comparative HRM literature

Research output: Contribution in Book/Report/Proceedings - With ISBN/ISSNChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Publication date22/04/2018
Host publicationHandbook of Research on Comparative Human Resource Management
EditorsChris Brewster, Wolfgang Mayrhofer, Elaine Farndale
Place of PublicationCheltenham
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing
Number of pages14
Edition2nd Ed
ISBN (print)9781784711122
<mark>Original language</mark>English


This chapter introduces this new area of investigation. Research on the psychological contract has been conducted from within two traditions, an international organisation HRM perspective and a cross-cultural or cross-national HRM perspective. The chapter focuses mainly on the latter tradition. It shows how the cross-cultural or cross-country perspective has adopted either a micro- or a macro- level of analysis. The micro-level studies have examined the specific psychological dynamics involved in the implicit employment relationship, being conducted in previously under-researched national contexts, and questioning whether the dynamics observed may be generic, and acultural, or whether there is some imprint of culture even within the core psychological contract of an employee. The macro-level studies have shifted the broad meaning of a psychological contract, and have used it as a metaphor to capture shifts in the employment relationship at country level that might be expected to result in new behaviours and management challenges. Finally, the chapter considers some of the main conclusions we can derive from this work.