Happily (mal)adjusted: Cosmopolitan identity and expatriate adjustment

Amir Grinstein, Luc Wathieu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


As an increasing portion of the world's population identifies itself as cosmopolitan, we examine whether cosmopolitan identity involves openness and adaptability to new environments or instead favors maintaining a global lifestyle that persists across environments. Based on a field study of expatriates, we find that the expected duration of sojourn is a crucial moderator of cosmopolitan behavior. In short-duration sojourns, cosmopolitans adjust more to new environments than non-cosmopolitans. In long-duration sojourns, non-cosmopolitans adjust more to the host country while cosmopolitans tend to retreat into a global lifestyle. We find that these adjustment choices are correlated with well-being, contrary to the claims in existing literature on expatriates that adjustment should be the preferred behavior regardless of consumer identity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337-345
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Research in Marketing
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2012


  • Consumer identity
  • Cosmopolitanism
  • Expatriate adjustment
  • Horizon effects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Marketing


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