People management after state socialism: A literature review and research agenda

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Serafini, G. O.
Wood, G.
Szamosi, L. T.
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This paper reviews the existing evidence base on the practice of people management in the context of post-state socialist countries of Asia. The focus is on Asian successor states of the Soviet Union and those under direct Soviet domination. In an undeniably diverse region, in all the countries under review there appears to be a disarticulation between liberal market reforms, economic progress, the ability to attract FDI and the development and persistence of a formal employment base. Extended informal networks of support often play an important role, inter alia, in informing recruitment, although clan based networks appear as quite impermeable to outsiders. Regulatory coverage is uneven but in many instances job protection is high. Drawing on the available research base, this paper consolidates and extends the existing state of knowledge on people management within the institutional contexts examined and draws out the implications for theorising and practice. The study highlights how reforms in one area may lead to counter-movements in others, shoring up existing modes of people management. Again, whilst clans and middle classes both have channels for political advocacy, there are fewer opportunities for workers and their representatives; this means that there is little impetus for legislation to promote better practice, workplace inclusivity and equity.
Serafini, G.O., Wood, G. and Szamosi, L.T. (2020) People management after state socialism: A literature review and research agenda. Human Resource Management Review, 30 (4), p. 1-16.