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2023/2024  KAN-CPOLO1033U  Managing People in Multinational Corporations

English Title
Managing People in Multinational Corporations

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory (also offered as elective)
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Spring
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for BSc/MSc i International Business and Politics, MSc
Course coordinator
  • Julia Bodner - Department of Strategy and Innovation (SI)
Main academic disciplines
  • Globalisation and international business
  • Human resource management
  • Strategy
Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face teaching
Last updated on 07-06-2023

Relevant links

Learning objectives
At the end of the course, students should be able to demonstrate:
  • Knowledge of key concepts and theories broadly relevant to the management and leadership of people in multinational organizations
  • The ability to apply relevant concepts and theories to the analysis of practical situations related to global people management
  • An awareness of dynamics, interdependences, and potential pitfalls in HRM practices pertaining to managing the challenges of a global workforce
  • The ability to critically assess and reflect, individually and in collaboration, upon methods, theories, and conclusions in real-life business cases
  • A basic understanding of how employee data can be used to analyse multinational organizations and the ability to detect and embrace sources of ambiguity in such analyses
Managing People in Multinational Corporations:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 10 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Release of assignment The Assignment is released in Digital Exam (DE) at exam start
Duration 7 days to prepare
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Summer
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
A new exam assignment must be answered. This applies to all students (failed, ill, or otherwise)
Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

This course is about how multinational corporations (MNCs) can motivate, enable, attract, and retain people to pursue their strategic organizational goals. It is aimed at helping students understand the key issues in the management of people in contemporary MNC contexts and providing them with theories, frameworks, and tools to help them recognize, understand, and manage human resources more effectively. 

Among the topics of the course are:

  • Strategic International Human Resource Management
  • Structuring MNCs to be locally responsive and globally integrated
  • Managing expatriation
  • Dealing with cultural differences
  • People Analytics
  • Incentives and performance management in MNCs
  • Managing people during organizational change and global expansion


During the lectures, the students will be introduced to selected contemporary literature from a wide range of disciplines, including strategy, human resource management, and organizational behavior, to better understand and predict how employees behave in the international context of a multinational firm. 


In relaion to Nordic Nine

The course Managing People in Multinational Corporations (MPMNCs) supports the Nordic Nine values in providing students an understanding of and ability to apply key concepts and theories that are relevant broadly to organizational contexts (NN1), focusing on the tension between global integration and local value creation in multinational firms (NN9). The case-based approach is centered on group and class discussions to achieve learning goals in collaboration (NN6) and enhance the learning of peers (NN8). With this approach, the course puts students in the shoes of decision-makers to reflect on their decisions’ implications on the competitiveness of businesses while compassionately considering their effects on employees and other stakeholders (NN4). Lastly, the course provides students with an understanding of how employee data can be used to analyse employee behaviour in multinational corporations and the ability to detect and navigate sources of ambiguity (NN2), as well as ethical dilemmas between opportunities and potential downsides of these analyses (NN5).

Description of the teaching methods
The class contains sessions on research and theoretical concepts and discussion sessions where students apply the concepts based on cases, guest lectures, and real-world examples from practitioners’ perspectives. Students are encouraged to bring their own views into the discussion, share insights, and learn with and from their fellow students. Required class preparation consists of reading cases and selected articles or podcasts before class. Students’ preparation for the case study sessions will be guided by a few (1-4) questions based on the reading or their own experience.
Feedback during the teaching period
Feedback will be given as we discuss the cases and readings in class. Polls and guided reading questions will be used to prompt discussions, enable feedback, and reinforce learning from cases and key themes. Discussions are structured and accompanied to encourage students to collaborate in groups and exchange constructive feedback. Finally, students can stop by to get feedback and ask questions during office hours.
Student workload
Preparation 90 hours
Lectures 30 hours
Exam (incl. preparation for the exam and actual exam period) 40 hours
Last updated on 07-06-2023