This special issue focuses on the effects and possible solutions to gender disparities caused by the Gender Data Gap. Analysing this data gap with its effects and possible solutions in detail will deepen our knowledge of gender-based discrepancies and their origins and implications. Below, we present a number of lines of inquiry that seem particularly fruitful in stimulating novel theoretical insights.

Topics of interest

Evolution, perpetuation and reproduction of the Gender Data Gap

The following are possible questions that contributors might address:

  • How do the individual characteristics and behaviours of managers and leaders accentuate or attenuate the effects of the Gender Data Gap?
  • What interpersonal processes maintain and reproduce versus interrupt the effects of the data gap?
  • How (i.e. through what processes and mechanisms) do organisational cultures facilitate versus prevent the development and perpetuation of the Gender Data Gap?
  • How do firm- and industry-level factors contribute to Gender Data Gap effects on women’s careers?

Effects of the Gender Data Gap on women

Possible questions include, but are not limited to:

  • How does the Gender Data Gap affect women’s careers and upward mobility?
  • To what extent do Gender Data Gaps cause or exacerbate toxic cultures and workplaces?
  • How do various social actors (HR managers, activist organisations, headhunters, the media, universities and business schools) help maintain or close the data gap and with what consequences?
  • How can our management and organisation theories be extended and strengthened by making ‘invisible acts’ (e.g. instrumental work activities done by women that are neither recognised nor rewarded) more visible?

Effects of the Gender Data Gap on intervention effectiveness

Accordingly, we encourage questions such as (but not exclusive to):

  • What are the assumptions in management and organisation studies that must be revisited based on novel insights derived from efforts to close the Gender Data Gap?
  • How does the Gender Data Gap intersect with cross-cutting systems of disadvantage (e.g. race, age and ability)? What are the implications for the effectiveness of interventions designed to ‘help women’?

In sum, we encourage contributions that address any of the above issues. We propose that the development and facilitation of the data gap, as well as its effects on women’s careers and wellbeing, should be approached from a multi-phenomenal and multi-level perspective that comprises leadership, values, norms and goals at the managerial and organisational levels.

Submission instructions

Every manuscript submitted to this special issue must provide both theoretical/conceptual and practical contributions. Conceptual, review and empirical papers will all be considered.

All submissions are subject to the European Management Journal’s double-blind peer review process, should respect the journal’s general publication guidelines and should be submitted through between 1st August and 18th September, 2023. The special issue will be published in 2025.

To ensure that all manuscripts are correctly identified for consideration for this special issue, it is important that authors select ‘SI: Gender Data Gap’ as the paper type. Please direct any questions about the special issue to Dr Sonja Sperber (

Objectives of the Special Issue 

Self-initiated expatriation has attracted a growing interest since the classical articles by Inkson, Arthur, Pringle and Barry (1997) and Suutari and Brewster (2000). By now, we have gained a general understanding of the phenomenon. However, looking at the samples underlying publications on self-initiated expatriates (SIEs) shows that the term SIE has been employed to cover a large variety of distinct populations that differ in a number of key contextual factors such as educational level, profession, gender and family status, country of origin and destination country as well as employing organizations. 

But context matters: expatriates in and from different places, at different times and in different kinds of organizations present different challenges for SIEs which impacts the extent of required personal initiative, their work experiences and career trajectories (Andresen, Pattie, & Hippler, 2020). For instance, diverse dangers in physically (COVID-19 pandemic, terrorism) or psychological environments have a substantial impact on SIEs’ behaviors, attitudes and careers (Bader, Schuster, & Dickmann, 2019). In most of SIE research samples are mixed, allowing us to draw only limited conclusions about the relevance and influence of contextual factors. This impedes the systematic comparison and integration of SIE knowledge. Thus, the role of context and its impact on SIEs’ career-related decisions and behaviours needs further exploration.  

Call for Papers

Submissions to the Special Issue are open to participants attending the 2nd International Conference on Self-Initiated Expatriation and all other authors. Submissions to CDI open 30th April 2022 and the submission due date is 30th July 2022.

Please submit enquiries to

Submissions should be made through ScholarOne Manuscripts:

Specific details on the format for submitted manuscripts can be found at the journal’s website  

Please direct any general questions about the journal or any administrative matters to the Editor, Professor Jim Jawahar ( 

Illustrative topics  

Exemplary research questions within the intended scope of this Special Issue include, but are not limited to, the following: 

1. Contextual influences of space on SIEs 

  • How are home and host country conditions impacting on self-initiated expatriation? 
  • How is the quality of the host environment shaping the experiences and career journeys of SIEs?  
  • What is the role of physical threats (COVID-19; crime, terrorism, nature) and psychological dangers (fear, anxiety, stress induced by the context) shaping the career patterns of SIEs? 

2. Contextual influence of time on SIEs 

  • How does the temporality of contextual conditions influence the life-course and career patterns of SIEs?  
  • What are the longitudinal effects of accumulation, transfer and utilization of career and human capital of SIEs? 
  • How does context shape the careers of self-initiated repatriates? 

3. Contextual influence of institutions on SIEs 

  • How do macro-societal factors, including economic circumstances, labour and immigration laws and institutional arrangements influence the careers of self-initiated expatriates? 
  • How do occupational patterns, regulations and customs affect SIEs and their careers? 
  • How do organizational configurations, HR approaches and culture shape SIEs’ attitudes and behaviours in relation to their careers?