• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

The relationship between workers and firms are changing worldwide. Nowhere is this more evident than in the psychological contracts of employment. This book combines the cross-national perspectives of organizational scholars from thirteen countries to examine how societies differ in the nature of psychological contracts in employment and how global business initiatives are bridging these differences. The contributors include social scientists with deep knowledge of the particular societies they describe, and whose personal scholarship involves psychological contract phenomena locally as well as abroad. Readers of Denise Rousseau's award winning book, Psychological Contract in Organizations (Sage 1995) will welcome the extension of this ground-breaking work into the global arena.

Introduction
Introduction
Denise M.RousseauRenéSchalk

Promises create debt.

Dutch Proverb

To break an oral agreement which is not legally binding is morally wrong.

The Talmud

The movement of progressive societies has hitherto been a movement from status to contract.

Henry James Sumner Maine

Employment, the exchange of work for compensation, is a social fact the world over. But what that exchange means to workers or employers is a subjective experience for each participant, affected by personal values and upbringing, the relationship's history, and the broader society. All of these factors merge to create a central feature of employment: the psychological contract.

Psychological contracts in employment are the belief systems of individual workers and employers regarding their mutual obligations (Figure 1.1). These obligations grow from the promises made as employment arrangements are started and sustained, from ...

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