The influence of LGBT expatriate stigmas on international assignment relocation

Jane Maley, Miriam Moeller

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review


Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual (LGBT) expatriates are rightfully sceptical and at times fearful of international assignment experiences due to the sometimes hostile reception
at assignment locations as a result of their sexual orientation. We argue that this hostility arises from a perceived incompatibility in values between the host country and LGBT expatriate. Dissonance between the two value systems leaves LGBT expatriates seemingly
powerless to self-manage imposed stigmas inside and outside the workplace at international assignment locations. We suggest it is essential for the multinational corporation (MNC) to help manage these stigmas by implementing human resource management (HRM) practices and policies that recognize the needs of traditional and non-traditional expatriates as substantially different. Using organizational legitimacy theory, we assert that MNCs’ strategic actions should entail a set of distinct practices and policies for the LGBT expatriates as a way to strive for acceptance from the LGBT expatriate community. LGBT stigmas are discussed and suggestions are put forward on the MNC’s role in supporting LGBT expatriates and their families
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBAM 2015 conference proceedings
Subtitle of host publicationThe value of pluralism in advancing management research, education and practice
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
PublisherBritish Academy of Management
Number of pages37
ISBN (Print)9780954960889
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes
EventBritish Academy of Management Annual Conference (29th : 2015) - Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Duration: 8 Sep 201510 Sep 2015


ConferenceBritish Academy of Management Annual Conference (29th : 2015)
CountryUnited Kingdom


  • non-traditional expatriate
  • lesbian
  • gay
  • bisexual and transgender (LGBT) expatriate
  • international assignment
  • stigma
  • legitimacy
  • value system congruence

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