Welcome to the first issue of the Research and Practice in Human Resource Management (RPHRM) Journal for 2007!

Over the last two years RPHRM has experienced an enormous growth in the numbers and quality of manuscripts received. Also, visits to the RPHRM website (rphrm@curtin. ) demonstrates the global spread and reputation of the Journal which has culminated in an agreement in 2006 with the prestigious Thomson Gale group to distribute the electronic version of the Journal worldwide. The editors do sincerely express our appreciation for the support to our partners at SHRI, especially Madam Ho and Mr David Ang, and to the School of Management at Curtin University, as well as the Journal renewed Editorial and Advisory boards, and of course to all RPHRM authors and readers.

As in the rest of the world, consultants in the Asia Pacific region have been experiencing fundamental changes in the nature of work, available labour markets, industrial relations systems and practices, the work attitudes and ethics of newer generations, and the influences of globalisation and technological innovation. These changes have challenged irreversibly our expectations and perceptions of the employment relationship, and the associated roles of managers and their employees. Concepts such as employee commitment and satisfaction, organisational justice, the ‘psychological contract’, knowledge management and knowledge transfer, have become negotiable and transactional elements of management paradigms. This current issue of the Journal explores these concepts in a variety of diverse regional contexts and industries.

Thus, the empirical study by Hooks and her colleagues examines the ways in which High Commitment Management (HCM) systems might be used to build organisational commitment amongst expatriate New Zealand accountants, in an attempt to stem their ‘brain drain’. Nelson and Tonks discuss the related issue of the casualisation of the Australian workforce, associated with ‘flexibility’ imperatives including the 2005 WorkChoices legislation, and suggest that this has been accompanied by significant violations of the psychological contract between employers and their casual employees.

The following article by Baker and her colleagues reports on a study exploring the under researched relationship between distance work (or work from home), employee satisfaction, and perceived productivity in Australian organisations. These authors conclude that organisational and job related factors are more likely to affect satisfaction and perceived productivity than work styles or household factors. They also suggest that there are significant implications for human resource professionals which might be transferable to different locations and industries.

The article by Stehle and Erwee provides interesting insights into the transferability of HR practices from German multinational enterprises (MNEs) to their Asian subsidiaries. The paper reports on an empirical study conducted in Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia, and concludes that cultural differences and relational contexts play significant roles. The article makes an important contribution to the predominant U.S. literature on international HRM.

The final article by Kang presents the findings from a research study of the perceptions of Korean nurses in terms of organisational ‘justice’ and motivations to become involved in training programmes. A salient finding of the research is that sustained competitive advantage can be enhanced by integrating the two concepts.

We hope that you will enjoy all the articles in this issue, and encourage you to submit manuscripts yourself. We are especially keen to receive papers from new authors and practitioners.

Alan Nankervis
Cecil Pearson
June 2007