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International HR Perspectives MHR104

Today, the field of Human Resource Management (HRM) in the service industries are experiencing an increasing pressure for change. Shifts in the economy, globalization, domestic diversity, and technology have created new demands for organizations, and propelled the field in some completely new directions.

Leaders of service businesses will face such challenges and the numerous opportunities for HR and organizations as a whole. In this course we examine such challenges and opportunities that influence current and future HR in a international perspective.

Course description for study year 2021-2022. Please note that changes may occur.

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Learning outcome

A candidate who has completed the course should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge skills and general competence:


After completing this course, the student has

  • advanced knowledge in human resource management within the service sectors.
  • in-depth knowledge in the Nordic Model and its implications for responsible leadership and service work environments.
  • in-depth knowledge on international HRM challenges and issues, concerning effects of different dimensions of justice, HES, ethics, leader/management styles, culture, and diversity management.
  • analytical training in identifying differences in international HRM leadership and systems within service sectors, their social and environmental consequences.
  • thorough professional knowledge that can be used for new perspectives on HR leadership behavior, recruitment policies and HR and HES systems in a contemporary international context.


After completing this course, the student can

  • independently analyze existing leadership and HRM theories and methods relevant for international HRM problems.
  • apply evidence-based knowledge on work environment and responsible leadership behavior on existing practice, national as well as internationally, in order to assess systems for recruitment, employee development, retention, appraisals, rewards and HES, based on actual service organization and strategic goals.
  • analyze and make use of a primary and secondary work environment and work force data sources in an independent and critical way, participate in planning, implementation and controlling in HRM and HES systems.
  • analyze different HRM and HES systems in different cultures and make suggestions for improvements in organizational diversity practice, teamwork and job description systems.

General competence:

After completing this course, the student can

  • analyze and formulate problem statements for organizational issues and work life.
  • apply theory and be able to contribute in diversified teamwork that may lead to new thinking and innovation processes.
  • apply his/her knowledge and skills in new areas in order to carry out advanced assignments and projects.

Research on service businesses have confirmed that happy employees make happy customers. Human Resource Management seeks to provide competent, trustful and safe work environments, and lead and manage individual employees in order for them to enjoy their job and and live a good life. This course is built on the Nordic model of work and welfare because this system, characterized by trust and dialogue, has given impressive results when it comes to good work environments and welfare.

The course is divided into two parts:

1. The HR system.

2. Leaders' HR practices.

In part one: The HR system, it will be focused on company systems like e.g, recruitment processes, employment terms and conditions, HR policies, communication systems etc.

  •  The Nordic model, participation, dialogue, and trust.
  •  HR in international perspectives.
  •  HR technology.
  •  Recruitment, development, and retention.
  •  Employee wellbeing:  Appraisal systems, reward system, cross-cultural HRM.
  •  Ethical perspectives and justice, globalization and cultural and legislative differences.

In part two: Leaders' HR practices, the focus will turn to leadership. How can leaders /managers perform in order to establish perceived fairness, trust, and high motivation among subordinates. Students will also learn about and reflect upon their own management preferences and priorities. 

  •  Cross cultural HRM.
  •  Global leadership competencies and styles.
  •  Employer-employee relations: LMX
  •  Work environment and organizational culture.
  •  Team building and leadership.
  •  Communication and negotiation.
  •  Conflict and crisis management.
  •  Diversity management: domestic and international.
  •  Board work.
  •  Self leadership.
Required prerequisite knowledge
Recommended prerequisites
Introductory  HR(M) course on BA-level.

Home exam and written exam

Form of assessment Weight Duration Marks Aid
1 part exam, individual or in group 3/10 A - F
Final written individual exam 7/10 4 Hours A - F

Coursework requirements
Mandatory activity
2 mandatory written work requirements.
Course teacher(s)
Course coordinator: Trude Furunes
Course teacher: Tone Therese Linge
Method of work
Case based teaching, lectures, seminars, group work, oral presentations.
Course assessment
The course will be assessed and evaluated according to the University of Stavanger' administrative quality system.
The syllabus can be found in Leganto