Submit a Manuscript to the Journal

Asia Pacific Business Review

For a Special Issue on

Indigenous Cultural Constructs in Management Research on the Asia Pacific

Abstract deadline
30 September 2024

Manuscript deadline
30 November 2024

Cover image - Asia Pacific Business Review

Special Issue Editor(s)

Ingyu Oh, Ewha Womans University, Seoul, Korea; Kansai Gaidai University, Osaka, Japan
[email protected]

Tim G. Andrews, Chiang Mai University Business School, Chiangmai University, Chiangmai, Thailand
[email protected]

Chris Rowley, Kellogg College, University of Oxford; Bayes Business School, City, University of London, UK
[email protected]

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Indigenous Cultural Constructs in Management Research on the Asia Pacific

Indigenous cultures profoundly influence entrepreneurship and business practices yet remain often overlooked in mainstream Asian business research. For example, indigenous businesses are deeply embedded in their cultural and institutional contexts, shaping their purpose, values and structures. They place a higher emphasis on kinship relations, community well-being and traditional knowledge shared through close networks (Horak & Klein, 2016; Xu & Wang, 2009). It is high time we looked closely at this under-researched area of business research within the Asia Pacific.

Indigenous cultural constructs are usually thought to be interwoven with the informal cultural institutions of a developing society (Holtbrugge, 2013; Tsui, 2004), including superstition (Andrews et al., 2022). It is not uncommon to assume that informal cultural institutions shape the behaviour of business groups and firms in developing societies like Myanmar, Thailand and Indonesia, including corporate governance mechanisms, CSR and wider management decision-making processes (Andrews et al., 2019). In Latin America, indigenous peoples have constructed their cultural meanings to localize the use of information and communication technologies (ICTs). Indigenous media and ICT adoption are shaped by traditional knowledge systems, cosmovisions and the need to preserve indigenous languages and cultural identities (Salazar, 2009; Fabricant, 2013). Furthermore, informal influence tactics rooted in indigenous cultural traditions can effectively achieve influence within organizations across different national contexts. Managers rated scenarios exemplifying indigenous forms of informal influence, such as wasta and zeitinho (Smith et al., 2012), along with guanxi and jul (Horak & Taube, 2016; Nolan & Rowley, 2020) as impactful for gaining interpersonal influence.


All these previous studies suggest that indigenous psychologies from Africa, Asia, Australasia and the Americas offer diverse constructions of the self that diverge from Western individualistic notions. These traditional psychologies, embedded in local cultural contexts, shape interpersonal dynamics, leadership styles and organizational behaviour within indigenous communities.


Innovation studies also hold that innovation is influenced by indigenous social organizations based on social ties and shared cultural values, which are often informal. New ventures either intentionally or intentionally try to leverage these informal cultural values, although formal culture undergoes changes that represent a zig-zag pattern. It is, therefore, impertinent to reject the possibility that the informal aspect of cultural change may lead to innovation as either intended or unintended consequences (Oh et al., 2023).


In international business, the knowledge of indigenous cultural constructs as informal culture is pivotal in sustaining business success in host countries (Holtbrugge, 2013; Leung, 2012; Luo, 2012). Indigenous peoples have engaged in international trade for millennia, demonstrating remarkable resilience and adaptability. Their businesses contribute unique cultural capital and traditional knowledge to modern economies while prioritizing sustainability and community well-being (Briggs, 2005).


The Focus of the Special Issue:


This Special Issue of ‘Indigenous Cultural Constructs in Management Research on the Asia Pacific’ explores the multifaceted relationship between indigenous cultural constructs and business activities of various kinds in the context of informal culture. We aim to provide a platform for experts and scholars to exchange knowledge, share cutting-edge research findings, discern academic trends, broaden research horizons, strengthen academic collaboration and promote the awareness of informal culture and its significance in business research.


Topics of Interest (but not limited to):


  • The nature of indigenous culture constructs - their determinants and characteristics – and how they have changed both in terms of nature/influence and our state of knowledge (e.g. concerning sub-constructs and other refinements such as the renqi element within guanxi)
  • How indigenous cultural constructs affect the practice of HRM (selection, recruitment, appraisal and deployment)
  • How indigenous cultural constructs shape organization structure, culture and/or performance
  • How indigenous cultural constructs inter-relate and compare with proximal universal/national culture dimensions (e.g. collectivism, particularism, conservatism)
  • Outlining and addressing the challenges – conceptual and empirical – to the conduct of indigenous management research
  • How indigenous culture constructs affect organizational communication (internal & external)


Submission Instructions

We encourage submissions from various theoretical perspectives and use diverse empirical methodologies, such as quantitative, qualitative, case-oriented or mixed methods. The key requirement is that the papers must be original studies that contribute to advancing existing knowledge and debates on indigenous management research in the Asia Pacific region. All papers will be reviewed in accordance with the APBR normal review processes. Manuscripts should be formatted in accordance with the APBR publication guidelines and have all the required content and structure—please look at the website.



The proposed timeline for the special issue is:


  • Deadline for abstracts and bios: 30 September 2024
  • Invitation to the paper developing workshop in Bali, Indonesia: 24-25 October 2024
  • Submission of the full paper: 30 November 2024
  • Revised article deadline (first round): 31 January 2025
  • Revised article deadline (second round): 28 February 2025
  • Online publication: March 2025 and onward


Instructions for Authors