The JGM BitBlog: What make them come? SIE magnets

Journal of Global Mobility

Jason Ryan, California State University, San Bernardino, USA

Sari Silvanto, California State University, Dominguez Hills, Carson, USA

The perception and rating of a country’s business environment have important implications for attracting trade, investment and increasingly talent. Recent studies have found that many national governments pay close attention to their ratings and rankings on Global Performance Assessments (GPAs), such as the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business (EDB) ranking.

This is because a country’s business environment and its ease of doing business rating are believed to influence the willingness of foreign companies and investors to deploy capital in it. Business Environments are also believed to be an important factor for attracting entrepreneurial talent. A number of national governments have launched initiatives such as the Global Entrepreneurship Programme in the United Kingdom and the Economic Development Board program for startups in Singapore that aim to attract foreign entrepreneurs by offering supportive business environments.

One other group of talented individuals that business environments matter to are SIEs. As talent shortages become more pronounced in many countries, SIEs represent a promising talent flow for filling talent shortfalls. It is, therefore, important to develop a better understanding of how business environments influence the relocation decisions of SIEs. Upon close examination, it is evident that business environments matter for attracting talented professionals, such as SIEs, interested in working in a location conducive to economic growth and knowledge and productivity spillovers. Favorable business environments facilitate the creation of agglomeration effects, which are in turn conducive to the creation of technological clusters with a need for skilled professionals and entrepreneurs.

Prior research also suggests that many SIEs who decide to relocate to a new country are largely motivated by factors that relate to its business environment, such as career and professional development. SIEs may also be seeking a location that offers greater tolerance and a higher degree of personal, political and economic freedom. Other studies additionally suggest that risk minimization is a major consideration when selecting a country to relocate to. Both these motivations are, thus, impacted by a host country’s business environment and the extent to which it offers opportunities while minimizing risks. Business environments, hence, play a significant role in determining in which countries SIEs choose to live and work.

As noted, it is important to develop a better understanding of how business environments influence the relocation decisions of SIEs. This study can help contribute to that understanding.

To read the full article, please see the Journal of Global Mobility publication:

Ryan, J. and Silvanto, S. (2021), "An examination of the influence of business environments on the attraction of globally mobile self-initiated expatriates", Journal of Global Mobility, Vol. 9 No. 3, pp. 382-407.