Relative Deprivation Theory In International Business Management

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The topics of expatriation , international assignments, and cross cultural adjustment have triggered a spirited debate among researchers in the literatures of international human resource management and international business management during the past decades (Black, 1988; Collings et al., 2007; Bird, Mendenhall, Stevens, Oddou, 2010). Due to the increase in fierce competition and globalisation 's intensity, multinational corporations (MNCs) are more inclined to capitalize on both international assignments and expatriates (Tungli and Peiperl, 2009). Expatriates are people assigned by their company in a different country to manage and control business operations (Noe et al., 2012, p.662). Moreover, international assignments are considered as…show more content…
Yet, there is little special attention given by researchers to the implications of the relative deprivation theory in international business studies, especially in Egypt. Consequently, this proposed topic is derived from the study of Ren et al. (2015) that integrated the relative deprivation theory with the self determination theory to explore their impact on expatriates ' thriving which, in turn, plays a vital role in their success in international assignments. However, the current study is quite different because Ren and his colleagues (2015) draw on Crosby 's relative deprivation model (1976) that emphasizes the role of comparisons between individuals in a social context in the emergence of the sense of being deprived. This is known as the "external referent approach". Consequently, they claim that expatriates may perceive deprivation if they lack the three constructs of the self determination theory which include: autonomy, competence, and relatedness (Ryan and Deci, 2000) compared to their local nationals in the host country in the same…show more content…
Meanwhile, this research will address the relative deprivation theory from a different perspective. In 1982, Crosby shifted his point of view and conducted a subsequent study that concentrated on using the concept of "self referent". He determined two preconditions for relative deprivation to prevail without any need to make comparisons with others. As a result, Folger et al. (1983) developed a new model of relative deprivation which is called "Referent Cognition". In this model, it was suggested that the feeling of deprivation might only exist due to self comparisons between the current situation (actual) and what might have been (expected). This perspective will be adopted in this proposed research. Expatriates will not leave their home country and accept to go through international assignments unless they find chances of new skills acquisition, talents improvements, and career development (Parker and Inkson, 1999). Similarly, after integrating the new perspective of the relative deprivation theory with the self determination theory, it can be argued that expatriates expect higher levels of autonomy, competence, and relatedness in the host country more than in their home country. If they experienced low levels of these three psychological needs below the expected, they might be more prone to feel resentment which, in turn, could be a hindrance for thriving, i.e, their ability to feel vitality and learning simultaneously (Spreitzer et al.,

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