Not all international assignments are created equal: HQ-subsidiary knowledge transfer patterns across types of assignments and types of knowledge

Florence Duvivier, Carine Peeters, Anne-wil Harzing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Drawing on 50 semi-structured interviews in a case study of a Belgian multinational and its foreign subsidiary in Poland, we develop new insights into how using different types of international assignments (long-term expatriation, short-term expatriation, short-term inpatriation) allows a HQ-subsidiary dyad to transfer different types of knowledge (declarative, procedural, axiomatic, relational), both from and to HQ, during and after the assignment. We show how each type of assignment acts as a unique knowledge transfer channel, and why it is critical that HQ-subsidiary dyads use an appropriate combination and sequence of international assignments reflecting their specific knowledge transfer needs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-190
JournalJournal of World Business
Issue number3
Early online date13 Feb 2019
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019



  • expatriation
  • inpatriation
  • knowledge transfer
  • knowledge types
  • HQ-subsidiary
  • relationships

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