Going abroad to play: Motivations, challenges, and support of sports expatriates

Marian van Bakel, Susan Salzbrenner

Publikation: Konferencebidrag uden forlag/tidsskriftPaperForskningpeer review


Professional athletes moving abroad for their career is a novel phenomenon in IHRM. This exploratory paper charts the motives of sports expatriates to move abroad to play, as well as adjustment challenges and support. A survey was conducted with 108 sports expatriates in 12 different sports. The main motivations to move abroad were the search for new challenges, followed by an interest to experience life abroad. In terms of challenges, different coaching style and communication issues were most often mentioned. Support was mainly informal, through team mates rather than professional providers. Our paper contributes to the literature because it is one of the first studies focusing on sports expatriates from an international HR perspective. Our study provides information on a vulnerable group of expatriates; they are young in age and under extreme performance pressure. Sports expatriates need all the support they can get, and yet, little professional support is offered.
StatusUdgivet - 2018
BegivenhedEuropean Academy of Management 2018: Research in Action - University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Island
Varighed: 20. jun. 201823. jun. 2018


KonferenceEuropean Academy of Management 2018
LokationUniversity of Iceland


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