20 September 2006
The Future of Multinationals in Canada
This opening session highlights the challenges of understanding multinational companies (MNCs). One of the leading managers from a Canadian MNC shares his perspective from the strategic centre of the firm. The perspectives of British and Canadian academics involved in the larger research project on multinational firms will help to contextualize Canadian and European experiences and seek to make the links with research and policy questions.
Chair: Christian LÉVESQUE (Professor, Department of Human Resources Management, HEC Montréal and CRIMT Co-Director)
Welcoming Remarks: Jean-Marie TOULOUSE (Professor and former Director, HEC Montréal)
Coffee and Registration
8:50 – 10:30
Finding Your Place in the Global Value Chain: Comparative Experiences of Small Open Economies
What kinds of MNCs are present in your country? How would you describe the changing role of the operations of MNCs of your national case (Ireland, Mexico, Canada) in the global division of labour of those MNCs? How has your country sought to position itself in global value chains? What are the HR, employment and public policy implications of this strategy?
Chair: Brenda LAFLEUR (Director, The Canada Project, The Conference Board of Canada)
Patrick GUNNIGLE (Professor of Business Studies, Kemmy Business School, University of Limerick, Ireland)
Jorge CARRILLO & Maria de LOS ANGELES POZAS (Professor and Research Coordinator, El Colegio de la Frontera Norte, Tijuana, Mexico and Professor, El Colegio di Mexico, Mexico)
Patrice JALETTE, CRIA (Professor, School of Industrial Relations, Université de Montréal and CRIMT Researcher) - [includes CRIMT-The Canada Project (CBOC) survey highlights]
10:50 – 12:30
What’s Local? What’s Global?: HR Practices in Global Firms
Do HR and employment strategies vary from one type of MNC to another? Is there scope for crafting distinct local and national practices or are we currently experiencing a hyper centralization along the lines of an all pervasive Anglo-Saxon model? Are national HR functions being downgraded in favour of international regional and international divisional structures? Is this situation for HR different than for other core functions within MNCs?
Chair: Alain GOSSELIN (Professor, Department of Human Resources Management, HEC Montréal)
Anthony FERNER (Professor of International Human Resource Management, Leicester Business School, De Montfort University, United Kingdom)
Christian LÉVESQUE (Professor, Department of Human Resources Management, HEC Montréal and CRIMT Co-Director) - [includes CRIMT-The Canada Project (CBOC) survey highlights]
Claude MARIER (Former Vice President, Human Resource Strategy, REXEL S.A.)
14:00 – 15:40
Driving and Diffusing Innovation across Borders
What are the practices and processes put in place to ensure the diffusion of innovations across borders in MNCs? What are the main problems and challenges for managing innovation and learning across borders? Under what conditions do local or national managers become innovators (or adapters) within MNC multinational operations?
Chair: Tania SABA (Professor, School of Industrial Relations, Université de Montréal and CRIMT Researcher)
Tony EDWARDS (Senior Lecturer in Comparative HRM, Department of Management, King’s College London, United Kingdom)
Olga TREGASKIS (Senior Research Fellow, Department of Human Resource Management, Leicester Business School, De Montfort University, United Kingdom)
Jacques BÉLANGER (Professor, Department of Industrial Relations, Université Laval and CRIMT Co-Director) - [includes CRIMT-The Canada Project (CBOC) survey highlights]
16:00 - 17:40
What Public Policies for Multinational Firms?
How are policy makers coming to terms with key trends in the international division of labour of global firms? Are those responses in Canada going in the right direction or the wrong direction? What is the scope for Canadian and provincial public policies to craft a policy framework that promotes both efficiency and equity outcomes for its citizens, notably in terms of good jobs, even if that framework is different from that of its closest neighbours? In your view, what are the three key elements of such a policy for the future?
Chair: Gregor MURRAY (Professor, School of Industrial Relations, Université de Montréal and CRIMT Director)
CRIMT-The Canada Project (CBOC) survey highlights
Pierre-Antoine HARVEY (Research Associate, CRIMT, Université de Montréal)
Round Table Participants:
Glen HODGSON (Vice President and Chief Economist, The Conference Board of Canada)
Buzz HARGROVE (National President, Canadian Auto Workers)
Closing Remarks: Michel PATRY (Director, HEC Montréal)