Quotation Andresen, Maike, Apospori, Eleni, Gunz, Hugh, Suzanne, Pamela Agata, Tangiuchi, Mami, Lysova, Evgenia I., Adeleye, Ifedapo, Babalola, Olusegun, Bagdadli, Silvia, Bakuwa, Rhoda, Bogićević Milikić, Biljana, Bosak, Janine, Cha, Jong‐Seok, Briscoe, Jon P., Chudzikowski, Katharina, Cotton, Richard, Dello Russo, Silvia, Dickmann, Michael, Dries, Nicky, Dysvik, Anders, Eggenhofer-Rehart, Petra, Fei, Zhangfeng, Ferencikova, Sonia, Gianecchini, Martina, Gubler, Martin, Hackett, Denisa, Hall, Douglas T., Jepsen, Denise, Kadriye Çakmak‐Otluoğlu, Övgü, Kaše, Robert, Khapova, Svetlana, Kim, Najung, Lazarova, Mila, Lehmann, Philip, Madero, Sergio, Mandel, Debbie, Mayrhofer, Wolfgang, Mishra, Sushanta Kumar, Naito, Chikae, Nikodijević, Ana D., Parry, Emma, Reichel, Astrid, Rozo Posada, Paula Liliana, Saher, Noreen, Saxena, Richa, Schleicher, Nanni, Shen, Yan, Schramm, Florian, Smale, Adam, Unite, Julie, Verbruggen, Marijke, Zikic, Jelena. 2020. Careers in context: An international study of career goals as mesostructure between societies’ career‐related human potential and proactive career behaviour. Human Resource Management Journal. 30 (3), 365-391.




Careers exist in a societal context that offers both constraints and opportunities for career actors. Whereas most studies focus on proximal individual and/or organisational-level variables, we provide insights into how career goals and behaviours are understood and embedded in the more distal societal context. More specifically, we operationalise societal context using the career-related human potential composite and aim to understand if and why career goals and behaviours vary between countries. Drawing on a model of career structuration and using multilevel mediation modelling, we draw on a survey of 17,986 employees from 27 countries, covering nine of GLOBE's 10 cultural clusters, and national statistical data to examine the relationship between societal context (macrostructure building the career-opportunity structure) and actors' career goals (career mesostructure) and career behaviour (actions). We show that societal context in terms of societies' career-related human potential composite is negatively associated with the importance given to financial achievements as a specific career mesostructure in a society that is positively related to individuals' proactive career behaviour. Our career mesostructure fully mediates the relationship between societal context and individuals' proactive career behaviour. In this way, we expand career theory's scope beyond occupation- and organisation-related factors.


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Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Journal article
Journal Human Resource Management Journal
Citation Index SSCI
WU Journalrating 2009 A
WU-Journal-Rating new MAN-A, STRAT-B, WH-A
Language English
Title Careers in context: An international study of career goals as mesostructure between societies’ career‐related human potential and proactive career behaviour
Volume 30
Number 3
Year 2020
Page from 365
Page to 391
Reviewed? Y
URL https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/1748-8583.12247
DOI https://doi.org/10.1111/1748-8583.12247
Open Access Y
Open Access Link https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/1748-8583.12247


Chudzikowski, Katharina (Details)
Eggenhofer-Rehart, Petra (Details)
Mayrhofer, Wolfgang (Details)
Reichel, Astrid (Details)
Schramm, Florian (Former researcher)
Adeleye, Ifedapo (Haslam College of Business, University of Tennessee, United States/USA)
Andresen, Maike (Faculty of Social Sciences, Economics and Business Administration, University of Bamberg, Germany)
Apospori, Eleni (Department of Marketing and Communication, Athens University of Economics and Business,, Greece)
Babalola, Olusegun (Lagos Business School, Pan‐Atlantic University, Nigeria)
Bagdadli, Silvia (Department of Management and Technology, Bocconi University, Italy)
Bakuwa, Rhoda (Faculty of Commerce, University of Malawi, Malawi)
Bogićević Milikić, Biljana (aculty of Economics Department of Management and Business Studies, University of Belgrade, Serbia)
Bosak, Janine (Business School, Dublin City University, Ireland)
Briscoe, Jon P. (Department of Management, Northern Illinois University, United States/USA)
Cha, Jong‐Seok (Business School, Hansung University, Republic of Korea)
Cotton, Richard (Gustavson School of Business, University of Victoria, Canada)
Dello Russo, Silvia (Department of Responsible Organization and Human Resources, Toulouse Business School, France)
Dickmann, Michael (Cranfield School of Management, Cranfield University, United Kingdom)
Dries, Nicky (Faculty of Economics and Business, KU Leuven, Belgium)
Dysvik, Anders (Department of Leadership and Organizational Behavior, BI Norwegian Business School, Norway)
Fei, Zhangfeng (Glorious Sun School of Business and Management, Donghua University, China)
Ferencikova, Sonia (Department of Management, School of Management Trencin/Bratislava, Slovakia)
Gianecchini, Martina (Department of Economics and Management “M. Fanno”, University of Padova, Italy)
Gubler, Martin (Lucerne School of Business, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts, Switzerland)
Gunz, Hugh (Institute for Management and Innovation, University of Toronto, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada)
Hackett, Denisa (Department of Management, College of Management in Trencin, Slovakia)
Hall, Douglas T. (Department of Organizational Behavior, Questrom School of Business, Boston University, United States/USA)
Jepsen, Denise (Department of Management, Macquarie Business School, Macquarie University, Australia)
Kadriye Çakmak‐Otluoğlu, Övgü (Department of Human Resource Management, School of Business, Istanbul University, Turkey)
Kaše, Robert (Faculty of Economics, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia)
Khapova, Svetlana (Department of Management and Organization, VU Amsterdam, Netherlands)
Kim, Najung (KMU International Business School, Kookmin University, Republic of Korea)
Lazarova, Mila (Beedie School of Business, Simon Fraser University, Canada)
Lehmann, Philip (Faculty of Social Sciences, Economics and Business Administration, University of Bamberg, Germany)
Lysova, Evgenia I. (Department of Management and Organization, VU Amsterdam, Netherlands)
Madero, Sergio (Escuela de Negocios, Tecnológico de Monterrey, Mexico)
Mandel, Debbie (Schwyz University of Teacher Education, Switzerland)
Mishra, Sushanta Kumar (Department of Organizational Behavior and HRM, Indian Institute of Management Indore, India)
Naito, Chikae (Graduate School of Commerce, Waseda University, Japan)
Nikodijević, Ana D. (Faculty of Organizational Sciences, Department of Human Resource Management, University of Belgrade, Serbia)
Parry, Emma (Cranfield School of Management, Cranfield University, United Kingdom)
Rozo Posada, Paula Liliana (Facultad de Administración, Universidad de los Andes, Colombia)
Saher, Noreen (Department of Economics, International Islamic University Islamabad, Pakistan)
Saxena, Richa (HR and OB Area, Institute of Management Technology Ghaziabad, India)
Schleicher, Nanni (Fakultät für Wirschafts‐ und Sozialwissenschaften, Sozialökonomie, University of Hamburg, Germany)
Shen, Yan (Gustavson School of Business, University of Victoria, Canada)
Smale, Adam (School of Management, University of Vaasa, Finland)
Suzanne, Pamela Agata (Business School, Universidad de San Andrés, Argentina)
Tangiuchi, Mami (Faculty of Graduate School of Commerce, Waseda University, Japan)
Unite, Julie (Humber, Mundie & McClary, Milwaukee, United States/USA)
Verbruggen, Marijke (Faculty of Economics and Business, KU Leuven, Belgium)
Zikic, Jelena (School of Human Resource Management, York University, Canada)
Interdisciplinary Institute for Management and Organizational Behavior IN (Details)
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