Faculty Profile

David Guttormsen

Assistant Professor - Department of Communication and Culture


David S. A. Guttormsen is an Assistant Professor in International and Cross-Cultural Management for the Department of Communication and Culture, BI Norwegian Business School. He earned his PhD Politics and International Studies from The University of Warwick (UK, supervised by Prof Stuart Croft) and obtained an MPhil International Business from the Centre for International Business, University of Leeds (CIBUL) (UK, supervised by Dr Malcolm Chapman (Leeds) and Prof Anne Marie Francesco (Hong Kong Baptist University)).

He also holds an MA International Relations (University of New South Wales, Australia); a GradCert International Relations (Curtin University of Technology, Australia); a BCom Public Relations and Management (Curtin Business School, Australia); and a PGCert Higher Education Professional Practice (Coventry, UK).

Prior to joining BI in 2017, David worked as Lecturer in International Business (equivalent to Assistant Professor/Førsteamanuensis) at University of Exeter Business School (UK) and Lecturer in International Management at Coventry University Business School (UK). He has also taught and supervised close to a hundred executive MBA and MSc dissertations at Warwick Business School (UK), The University of Warwick (UK), University of Birmingham Business School (UK) and University of Leicester School of Management (UK).

David remains an external associate at Warwick Business School. He has previously held visiting research positions at Waseda University (Japan, Graduate School of Commerce); Seoul National University (South Korea, Center for International Studies); Leeds University Business School (UK); Fudan University (China, Nordic Centre); Hong Kong Baptist University (Hong Kong SAR, David C. Lam Institute for East-West Studies); Curtin Business School (Australia); Helsinki Business School (Finland); and Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO, Norway).

He has also been an invited speaker at Chinese University of Hong Kong (Hong Kong SAR); Newcastle University Business School (UK); Bucharest University of Economic Studies (Romania); BAU International Berlin – University of Applied Sciences (Germany); University of Essex Business School (UK); Chukyo University (Japan); in addition to the institutions where he has held visiting research positions.

Research Specialisations

David’s interdisciplinary research activities and expertise are traversing the International Business, International Human Resource Management, Cross-Cultural Management and Organisational Behaviour disciplines, and are organised around four main themes:

- Expatriate Management, Global Mobility and international assignments.
- Cross-Cultural Management research within an international business management context.
- Global Talent Management.
- Qualitative research methodology and intercultural field-research.

Theoretically, David draws upon identity-construction, social constructionism, social categorisation, relationality, epistemic reflexivity and Bourdieu’s Theory of Practice. Geographically, his research interests predominantly centre around East-Asia, Southeast-Asia, Scandinavia and the U.S.

He has conducted extensive fieldwork, interviewing international managers, expatriates and public-policy elites in Hong Kong, South-Korea, the U.S., Brazil, Bulgaria, Belgium, China, Dubai, Malaysia, Myanmar, Egypt, Taiwan and Norway. A secondary area of research interest encompasses American think tanks and their China-policy research expertise as well as identity and cross-cultural aspects in U.S. foreign policy towards China.

Publications & Research Collaboration

David’s research has appeared in international and peer-reviewed ABS rated journals, including: Cross Cultural & Strategic Management; Human Resource Development International; International Studies of Management & Organization; Personnel Review; Scandinavian Journal of Management; and Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management.

David currently collaborates with the Bulgarian National Revenue Agency (NRA) and a leading Norwegian Multinational Enterprise in addition to several co-authors from Denmark, Hong Kong, Australia, Bulgaria, Belgium, Germany, Myanmar, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, Serbia, Canada, the Philippines and the UK on various research projects and co-authored papers.

He is regularly invited to present his work at international academic conferences, such as the European Academy of Management, Academy of International Business, European International Business Academy and European Group for Organizational Studies. David reviews on an ad-hoc basis for several 3* (and lower) ABS rated journals.

PhD Supervision/Examination

David has co-supervised one PhD student to successful completion (Exeter, UK – examined by Prof Charles Harvey, Newcastle University Business School, and Prof Stefan Böhm, Exeter) – and served as an External PhD Examiner (Leicester Business School, De Montfort University, UK). He welcomes queries regarding PhD supervision from those having research interests relating to expatriates working and living abroad in addition to intercultural challenges in international work-life – particularly, studies proposed as a qualitative research endeavour.


- BST 2412 International Business, Co-course Responsible (autumn 2017).SPÅ 2901: Business Communication: Intercultural Communication and Ethics (autumn 2017, autumn 2018).
- BTH 2412 Bachelor Thesis – International Business, Co-course Responsible (spring 2018).
- Guest-lectures on MRK 3534 Economic Anthropology (autumn 2018)
- EXC 3631 International Business Environment (autumn 2018)

David continues to receive very high student satisfaction scores on his teaching, and feels very passionate about contributing to his students’ learning and making learning-processes relevant for the increasingly competitive global job-market. Through deploying different teaching methods, he brings his international and intercultural research regarding international business practitioners and companies into the classroom. He particularly emphasises developing the student’s critical analysis and ‘out-of-the-box’ problem solving skills, in addition to self-reflexivity and intercultural appreciation – through active use of case studies.

David is a Fellow of The Higher Education Academy (UK), and has previously acted as programme director for an undergraduate degree (Exeter) as well as managed and developed new modules/courses at the MBA, postgraduate and undergraduate levels (Exeter, Coventry). David has also acted as an external examiner at University of London and Oxford Brookes University (UK) and various Norwegian higher education institutions.

Leadership & External Appointments - Lead Editor (2017–), ‘Field Guide to Intercultural Research’ – publisher: Edward Elgar (with Prof Jakob Lauring, Aarhus University School of Business and Social Sciences (Denmark) and Dr Malcolm Chapman, Leeds University Business School (UK)).
- Lead-Proponent (2018/2019), Symposium: ‘Highly-Educated Immigrants: Opportunities, Dilemmas and the Role of Private Sector Companies’, 2019 European Academy of Management annual conference, Lisbon, Portugal.
- Appointed member of the Editorial Review Board (applicable from 2019), Journal of Global Mobility.
- Appointed member of the Editorial Board (2017-), Human Resource Developmental International.
- Appointed member of the Editorial and Review Board (2017-), European Journal of International Management.
- External Examiner (2017–), Oxford Brookes University, UK. Degree: MA in International Business, Culture and Languages.
- Special Interest Group Co-Plenary Organiser (2018-2019); Chair (2017-2018); Track Chair (2016-2017); and Co-Plenary Organiser (2015-2016), Research Methods & Research Practice Track, European Academy of Management annual conferences.
- Principal Investigator (2016–): research project/industrial partnership on global expatriate mobility, expatriate failure, expatriate Return on Investment and cross-cultural challenges (with a Norwegian MNE).
- Co-Principal Investigator (2015–): research project on business expatriates and success-factors (with Prof Jakob Lauring, Aarhus University School of Business and Social Sciences, Denmark).
- Co-Principal Investigator (2016–): research project on international sojourners (with Prof Lauring, Aarhus).
- Co-Principal Investigator (2015–): research project on expatriates, flat tax, foreign investment climate and economic growth in Bulgaria (with Mr Trifon Pavkov, CIO, Bulgarian National Revenue Agency, and Dr Stanley Gyoshev (Exeter, UK)).
- Co-Editor (2014–), Guest-Issue (published, September 2018): ‘Silenced and Neglected Voices in Cross-Cultural Management Research?’, International Studies of Management & Organization (with Prof Lauring, Aarhus).
- Symposium Chair and Organiser – ‘Silenced and Neglected Voices in Cross-Cultural Management Research?’, 14th Annual Conference of the European Academy of Management (EURAM), 4-7 June 2014, Valencia, Spain.
- Elected Chair (and thereby serving on the Board of the Trustees) (2011-2012), Vice Chair (2010-2011) and President Ex-officio (2012-2013), Postgraduate Network Executive Committee, British International Studies Association.

David is a Norwegian citizen and native speaker. Reflecting his research and teaching interests, he loves international travel and exploring new cultures. His personal pledge is to have visited 50 countries by the age of 50 – so far, it is looking good! David also enjoys playing the piano (and has even worked as a church organist!) in addition to going to the theatre and watching world cinema (especially, British/French/Scandinavian crime dramas and Korean drama television series/movies).


Guttormsen, David S.A. & Francesco, Anne Marie (2019)

Status and Success: Do Lower Status Expatriates in Multinational Corporations Experience Different Types of Success?

Journal of Global Mobility:The Home of Expatriate Management Research, 7(4), s. 364- 380. Doi: 10.1108/JGM-02-2019-0016

Purpose: The aim of this study is to examine how low status expatriates (lower position, younger, female) are positioned differently compared to high status expatriates (higher position, older, male) in terms of experiencing various types of success. Design/methodology/approach: Based on 424 responses from business expatriates working within multinational corporations operating in Asia, the study tests whether low status expatriates experience higher personal success while high status expatriates see more organization-related success. Findings: The results demonstrate that expatriates with different status-related characteristics might experience success during an international assignment differently. Additionally, our results reveal the relevance of avoiding treating success as a single variable and of investigating the actual experiences acquired while working abroad to better appreciate how expatriates experience success differently. Originality/value – The extant literature offers a limited understanding of expatriate success as the phenomenon has often been conceptualized in relatively simple terms, i.e., the completion of the international assignment contract. Our study offers an alternative view. Measuring success using a single outcome variable does not fully capture the experience. Success can be perceived in different ways, and different types of success are associated with different types of characteristics.

Lauring, Jakob; Guttormsen, David S.A. & McNulty, Yvonne (2019)

Adult third culture kids: Adjustment and personal development

Cross cultural & strategic management Doi: 10.1108/CCSM-02-2019-0035 - Full text in research archive

Abstract Purpose – The aim of this study is to explore the relationship between interaction adjustment and personal development for expatriates and to examine whether this differs between adults that have, and have not, lived abroad during their adolescence. Design/methodology/approach – We use survey responses from 424 business expatriates in Asia distinguishing between adult third culture kids (ATCKs) that have lived abroad during their adolescence and adult mono-culture kids (AMCKs) that have not. Findings – Our results show that while interaction adjustment generally improves the experience of personal development, this effect is stronger for ATCKs. AMCKs will experience personal development almost independently of their interaction adjustment with host nationals solely due to the novelty of the international experience. For ATCKs, just being in the new country is not enough for them to feel they have developed personally; they need to engage more deeply with the local population to achieve this. Originality/value – The study contributes to the literature that links international experience to adjustment and to the literature that connects adjustment to personal development. By combining the two literatures, we provide new knowledge that explains in greater detail how adjustment is linked to personal development.

Guttormsen, David S.A. (2018)

Does the ‘Non-Traditional Expatriate’ Exist? A Critical Exploration of New Expatriation Categories

Scandinavian Journal of Management, 34(3), s. 233- 244. Doi: 10.1016/j.scaman.2018.05.004 - Full text in research archive

Non-Traditional Expatriates (NTEs) are rapidly increasing in the global talent pool, but remains a ‘black-box’ in the Expatriate Management and Global Mobility literatures. This article advances the conceptualisation of NTEs, due to the nascent research field is lacking construct clarity in terms of the meaning of the term as well as an operationalised conceptual framework. Five underlying assumptions in the scarce extant literature are identified and discussed, as a means to responding to the following research questions: (i) how credible is the NTE term as an expatriation typology?; and (ii) how can the conceptual framework of NTEs be operationalised? If these key issues remain unsolved, there is a risk of establishing flawed research design which can negatively affect researchers’ credibility when providing policy advice on global staffing and talent management to international managers and Multinational Enterprises (MNEs). This conceptual article draws upon key social anthropological and sociological theories, and proposes a relational research design for investigating NTEs, as well as propositions for future research

Guttormsen, David S.A.; Francesco, Anne Marie & Chapman, Malcolm K. (2018)

Revisiting the Expatriate Failure Concept: A Qualitative Study of Scandinavian Expatriates in Hong Kong

Scandinavian Journal of Management, 34(2), s. 117- 128. Doi: 10.1016/j.scaman.2018.03.005 - Full text in research archive

This article advances the understanding of expatriate failure, which remains a contested social phenomenon in international work life as well as scholarly research. The study challenges the definition of expatriate failure and its inherent biases, i.e., the epistemological primacy of the firm level and the failure/success binary. We argue that this qualitative study of 51 Scandinavian expatriates in Hong Kong can contribute to advancing theory on the expatriate failure concept by asking individual expatriates what constitutes failure to them. By applying social constructionist and social anthropological ideas to the expatriate failure concept debate, we develop the internationality thesis which demonstrates a discrepancy between the expatriates’ perceptions of successful international assignments and the actual nature of their lived lives; many expatriates desire to enrich their lives through experiencing an international/intercultural and adventurous lifestyle, but, in fact, living lives with limited intercultural exposure and interaction. We conclude by proposing a reconceptualisation of expatriate failure in terms of offering both a new definition and approach to researching expatriate failure in which time/duration, context, and geographical location need to be taken into account. We believe the new approach can overcome some of the empirical unsoundness of mainstream definitions.

Guttormsen, David & Lauring, Jakob (2018)

Fringe Voices in Cross-Cultural Management Research: Silenced and Neglected?

International Studies of Management and Organization, 48(3), s. 239- 246. Doi: 10.1080/00208825.2018.1480465 - Full text in research archive

This introductory article asks if there are silenced and neglected voices in current cross-cultural management research, and if so, what we can learn from them. Taking departure in the six articles selected for this guest issue we argue that there are indeed valuable fringe voices and that some are neglected while others are instead silenced. From there we proceed to propose new avenues for future research that allow fringe exploration to compete for the attention so far mainly held by the dominant mainstream cross-cultural management literature. We argue that in moving across paradigms cross-cultural management research should confront and oppose excessively simplified notions on culture, nations and individuals. Moreover, we maintain a need for cross-cultural management researchers to question, ourselves and the literature we read, if knowledge produced actually challenges preconceptions or rather comforts the readers.

Guttormsen, David (2018)

Advancing Otherness and Othering of the cultural Other during ‘Intercultural Encounters’ in Cross-Cultural Management Research

International Studies of Management and Organization, 48(3), s. 314- 332. Doi: 10.1080/00208825.2018.1480874 - Full text in research archive

Jonasson, Charlotte; Lauring, Jakob & Guttormsen, David (2018)

Inclusive management in international organizations: How does it affect local and expatriate academics?

Personnel Review, 47(2), s. 458- 473. Doi: 10.1108/PR-12-2015-0323 - Full text in research archive

Purpose: A growing number of academics relocate abroad to work as expatriates in the university sector. While this employee group seems to have a highly constructive influence on the performance of university organizations, some problems in relation to effective inclusion of these individuals have been noted. In order to further advance the theoretical understanding regarding integration efforts in international university organizations, the purpose of this paper is to explore how two types of inclusive management, empowering management (identity-blind) vs English management communication (identity-conscious), affect local and expatriate academics. Design/methodology/approach: Using responses generated from a survey of 792 local and 620 expatriate academics, this paper assesses the effects of inclusive management on job engagement and stress among the two groups. Findings: The results show that one type of inclusive management, empowering management (identity-blind), has a favorable influence on job engagement and stress in both subsamples. The other type, English management communication (identity-conscious), increases stress for local academics but has no effect on the expatriates. These findings are useful for theory development in relation to employee inclusion in international organizations. Originality/value: The authors have little knowledge about how inclusive management functions in international organizations. Testing the effect of identity-blind and identity-conscious inclusive management practices among two different groups of local and expatriate academics provides new insight to this area. In particular, the use of English management communication provides new knowledge on the integration of majority and minority groups in international organizations

Guttormsen, David (2017)

Introducing the Expatriate ‘Entry-Mode’: A Missing Link in Global Mobility and Expatriate Management Research

Human Resource Development International, 20(2), s. 99- 126. Doi: 10.1080/13678868.2016.1240288

Fjellstrom, Daniella & Guttormsen, David S. A. (2016)

A critical exploration of ‘access’ in qualitative International Business field research: towards a concept of socio-cultural and multidimensional research practice

Qualitative research in organization and management, 11(2), s. 110- 126. Doi: 10.1108/QROM-05-2014-1225

Zhang, Ling Eleanor & Guttormsen, David (2016)

Multiculturality’ as a Key Methodological Challenge during In-depth Interviewing in International Business Research

Cross cultural & strategic management, 23(2), s. 232- 256. Doi: 10.1108/CCSM-07-2014-0084

Guttormsen, David (2015)

Looking Forward by Looking Back: a Self/Other Perspective on Intercultural Expatriate Research

Holden, Nigel; Michailova, Snejina & Tieze, Susanne (red.). Routledge Companion to Cross-Cultural Management

Guttormsen, David & van de Wetering, Carina (2013)

Non-State Actors in World Politics and International Relations research – an Introduction

Political Perspectives, 7(1)

Medina-Iborra, Ivan & Guttormsen, David (2013)

Visibility and Activity: Foreign Affairs Think Tanks in the United Kingdom

Political Perspectives, 7(1)

Guttormsen, David & Lauring, Jakob (2010)

Challenges of Ethnicity in Organizational Interaction: The Role of Language Use in Expatriate Management

Crennan, J K (red.). Ethnicity: Cultural roles, Spiritual Practices, and Social challenges

Alvik, Ole & Guttormsen, David S.A. (2018)

Utenlandsstasjonering: Må ha rett person på rett plass også i utlandet

Ledernett [Internett]

Alvik, Ole & Guttormsen, David S.A. (2018)

Må ha rett person på riktig plass

Personal og Ledelse [Fagblad]

Guttormsen, David S.A. (2018)

Advancing ‘Epistemic Reflexivity’ as Multiple Forms and Methodological Process in International Business and Management Research: a Bourdieusian Perspective

British Academy of Management, 2018 Conference Proceedings (red.). BAM2018 Conference Proceedings

Guttormsen, David S.A. & Lauring, Jakob (2018)

Modern-Day Vikings Facing Rocky Seas: Intervening Obstacles in Global Talent Management and Expatriation Flows within a Norwegian MNE Manufacturer

British Academy of Management, 2018 Conference Proceedings (red.). BAM2018 Conference Proceedings

Guttormsen, David S.A. & Chapman, Malcolm K. (2018)

Context, and the ‘Emic/Etic’ Contrast Revisited for International Business & Management Research Reflections from Social Anthropology on Evolution of Intellectual Ideas and the Illusionary ‘Shared Etics’

British Academy of Management, 2018 Conference Proceedings (red.). BAM2018 Conference Proceedings

Perkins, Graham; Gilmore, Sarah & Guttormsen, David S.A. (2018)

The Prospect of Universal Basic Income in the Changing World of Work: Establishing a Research Agenda and Future Directions

British Academy of Management, 2018 Conference Proceedings (red.). BAM2018 Conference Proceedings

Guttormsen, David S.A. & Lauring, Jakob (2018)

Revisiting the Expatriate Failure Concept: A Qualitative Study of Scandinavian Expatriates in Hong Kong

[Academic lecture]. 18th Annual Conference of the European Academy of Management (EURAM).

Guttormsen, David S.A. (2018)

Managing Expatriate Talent Across Borders: A Qualitative Study of Global Forms of Work within a Norwegian Geocentric MNE Manufacturer

[Academic lecture]. 34th European Group of Organization Studies (EGOS) Colloquium.

Guttormsen, David S.A. & Lauring, Jakob (2017)



Guttormsen, David (2016)

Advancing Otherness and Othering of the cultural Other during ‘Intercultural Encounters’ in Cross-Cultural Management Research: Implications for Theory and Practitioners in International Organisations

[Academic lecture]. 42nd European International Business Academy (EIBA) Conference.

Guttormsen, David (2015)

Does the ‘Non-Traditional Expatriate’ Exist? A Critical Exploration of New Expatriation Categories

[Academic lecture]. European International Business Academy (EIBA) 2015 Conference.

Guttormsen, David (2015)

Advancing Bourdieu’s ‘Epistemic Reflexivity’ as a Method in International Business Research

[Academic lecture]. European International Business Academy 2015 Conference.

Guttormsen, David S.A. (2014)

Global Mobility and the ‘Expatriate Failure’ Concept – a social Constructionist Critique

[Academic lecture]. European Academy of Management (EURAM) Annual Conference.

Guttormsen, David S.A. (2014)

A transdisciplinary critique of the Cross-Cultural Management Research Paradigm – a Self/Other Perspective

[Academic lecture]. European Academy of Management Annual Conference.

Zhang, Ling Eleanor & Guttormsen, David S.A. (2013)

The Multicultural Interviewer in Qualitative International Business Research: Four Cases of International Field-Studies

[Academic lecture]. 13th Annual Conference of the European Academy of Management.

Guttormsen, David S.A. & Zhang, Ling Eleanor (2013)

In-depth Interviews in International Business Research: Multiculturality, Power & Language

[Academic lecture]. 55th Annual Meeting of the Academy of International Business.

Guttormsen, David S.A. (2013)

(Self) Reflexivity as Method(ology): Advancing International Business Research

[Academic lecture]. 55th Annual Meeting of the Academy of International Business.

Guttormsen, David S.A. (2012)

Global Mobility and ‘Expatriate Entry-Modes’

[Academic lecture]. European Academy of Management (EURAM) Annual Conference.

Guttormsen, David S.A. (2010)

Unlocking Complexity with Simplicity: A Social Constructionist take on the ‘Ethnographic Interview’ in Multilingual and Intercultural ‘Multi-site’ field research

[Academic lecture]. European Conference on Research Methodology for Business and Management Studies.

Academic Degrees
Year Academic Department Degree
2015 Coventry university PGCert
2014 The University of Warwick PhD
2011 Leeds University Business School Master M.Phil.
2006 University of New South Wales M.A.
2005 Curtin University of Technology GradCert
2004 Curtin Business School BCom
Work Experience
Year Employer Job Title
2014 - Present Warwick Business School External Teaching Associate
2018 - 2018 Waseda University, Graduate School of Commerce Visiting Scholar
2016 - 2017 Helsinki Business School Visiting Professor
2014 - 2017 University of Exeter Business School Lecturer in International Business (equivalent to Assistant Professor/Førsteamanuensis)
2011 - 2017 Leeds University Business School Visiting Researcher
2016 - 2016 Seoul National University - Center for International Studies Visiting Researcher
2014 - 2014 University of Birmingham - Business School External Dissertation Supervisor
2012 - 2014 Coventry University Business School Lecturer in International Management
2011 - 2012 The University of Warwick - Department of Politics and International Studies Part-time teacher
2011 - 2012 University of Leicester - School of Management Associate Tutor
2011 - 2011 Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) Visiting Researcher
2008 - 2009 Hong Kong Baptist University - David C. Lam Institute for East-West Studies (LEWI) Visiting Research Student