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This guide lists some key resources and search strategies for your assignments, but it's impossible to cover every possible resource since I can't predict the companies and countries you might focus on. If these initial suggestions don't help, please do contact the SFU Library for help.
Good luck with your assignments!
Books and ebooks
Books and ebooks provide information of a depth and breadth that can't be matched by most articles or websites. Start by searching the SFU Library catalogue using the subject headings and search tips in the table below, then try some of the local public and college libraries using the same terms.
|Sample searches||Sample titles|
Try adding "- <country/region name>" or "- Cross-cultural studies" after any of these subject headings to focus your search. For example, International business enterprises - Europe or Personnel management - China.
Also try combinations of these terms in your search; for example, Personnel management AND Intercultural communication
Management and organization in Germany [print]
Strategic leadership across cultures : the GLOBE study of CEO leadership behavior and effectiveness in 24 countries [print]
New models of human resource management in China and India [print]
Management : a developing country perspective [print]
|Other subjects to try, either on their own or in combination with the terms above: Globalization, Consolidation and merger of corporations, Organizational behavior, and Social responsibility of business.|
Business Source Complete will be your main database for article research in this field. Start your search with the same subject headings listed above for books and ebooks. Business Source Complete indexes articles from such publications as...
- International Journal of Human Resource Management
- Journal of World Business
- Journal of International Business Studies
- European Management Journal
- International Journal of Manpower
- Thunderbird International Business Review
- Asia Pacific Business Review
- Human Resources Magazine (practitioner magazine - not an academic journal)
- Click here for a pre-run search in Business Source Complete of all of the publications above. Refine the search by adding your own search terms.
Factiva offers a couple search shortcuts that might be useful for topics of this sort. Add a few search terms to the following search limiters:
- Factiva Expert Search > PR Reputation Drivers > Workplace Employment (English)
- Factiva Expert Search > PR Reputation Drivers > Equal Opportunities
- Factiva Expert Search > PR Reputation Drivers > Labor
Covers general and industry news sources from around the world.
Recent issues of over 1000 newspapers from around the world, many of which have career/work sections as well as news on companies operating locally. Includes the Wall Street Journal - Asia and the Wall Street Journal - Europe.
Wall Street Journal - Eastern Edition (the US edition of the newspaper)
WSJ - Europe
WSJ - Asia
Although the WSJ is indexed in Business Source Complete, the links above will allow you to search through the fulltext of the articles in each of the three major English-language editions as well. Possibly useful if you are looking for information that might be buried deep in an article.
International Directory of Company Histories
Short reports on thousands of companies. Covers major events and milestones, as well as descriptions of strategies and issues.
The Government of Canada's website on cultural differences around the world, with a focus on cultural differences in the workplace.
A series of country guides aimed at people who might want a career abroad. Often provide information on the employment environment. These guides are getting a bit old (2013 and previous), but may still have value.
World Federation of Personnel Management Associations
Includes research reports, many of which touch on international HR issues (e.g., HR Global Challenges), access to their newsletter and links to national and regional HR associations, each of which may have further resources.
International Market Research
Lists resources that cover the issues with "doing business" in other countries from the perspective of a marketer can often also be of use to an HR practitioner. Both types of professionals need to understand the cultural and regulatory environment.
Lists resources (SFU and beyond) that are often useful when researching specific companies.
Cases can vary widely in depth and focus, and it can be very difficult to find one on a specific company. This guide lists some of my favourite resources and search techniques for finding useful cases.
a. Research before picking an organization! It's rare for companies to release information on their internal HR issues. Make sure there is going to be some information to work with before you choose your target company.
b. Try looking for case studies first. In particular, look for books using the subjects listed above and add the phrases "case study" or "case studies" to your search, or .
c. Since companies usually don't want their HR issues to be public, try to think of situations in which they lose that control. For example, if you read in the news that there have been a lot of strikes and other labour actions involving airlines in India, then perhaps news articles on airlines operating in India would have information on the issues being discussed and the history, solutions, context, etc.
d. After you've identified a company that has some details about its workforce available, use my Company Information guide to research the other facts about the company (size, location, etc.).
Writing your report: Research is only half the battle! You also need to communicate your findings in a clear, well-structured paper. Check the SFU Library guides to Business Writing and Writing for University for resources to help with paper structures, grammar, spelling, and more.
Citing your sources: You also need to correctly cite all of the books, journal articles, and sites that you used in your research. Start with the SFU Library guide to APA Style. A couple other guides that you may want to start with are Citing Sources (Duke University Libraries).
Learning how to properly credit others when you use their ideas is a difficult but important part of research. Start with the SFU Library's interactive tutorial "Understanding and Avoiding Plagiarism" to test yourself and to learn more about plagiarism. Also read the SFU Library Guide on Plagiarism for further discussion of this critical topic and for links to other plagiarism guides.
Presenting your results: Start with our guide to Business Presentations for practical tips on ways to improve your public speaking.
If you are having difficulties with a particular resource, check to see if it has an online or print guide. Many of the databases that you will use have built-in 'help' sections (e.g., Business Source Complete & LexisNexis). For general help using our catalogue or moving from citation to journal, we have some online tutorials.
In person, you can visit any of the three reference desks at the Surrey, Burnaby or Harbour Centre (Vancouver) campuses. Librarians can help you identify your concepts, think of synonyms, choose databases and print indexes, search for statistics, articles and books here or at other libraries, search for web resources, and much more.
If you are working at home, you could try contacting our reference librarians via telephone, chat, or email using our Ask Us services.
You can also feel free to email me (email@example.com) with your question. It makes things much more efficient if you start your email by explaining...
- what class you are in (so I have an idea of your assignment and background),
- when the assignment is due,
- what exactly you are after (saying "I need to find everything about HR in Mongolia" won't be very efficient; try to tell me what specific information you need), and
- where you have you looked so far (e.g., have you tried the catalogue and Business Source Complete?), and what search terms you tried when you searched.