Understanding the Corporate University phenomenon: A human capital theory perspective

Greg G. Wang, Jessica Li, Xuejun Qiao, Judy Y. Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Corporate Universities (CU) have become a global phenomenon in organisations. This study investigated the CU phenomenon through the lens of human capital theory. Combined with a reflexive approach, we conducted a comprehensive review and analysis of literatures in economics and Human Resource Development (HRD). We found that, different from existing CU literature, as a HRD operational entity, the CU and the traditional university were rooted in different skills contexts. Theorising the CU phenomenon is to theorise HRD. We further explored an alternative model to understand the CU phenomenon. Implications for HRD research were also discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)182-204
Number of pages23
JournalInternational Journal of Human Resources Development and Management
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Corporate universities
  • CU
  • General skills
  • Human capital theory
  • Skill context
  • Specific skill
  • Theory building

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


Dive into the research topics of 'Understanding the Corporate University phenomenon: A human capital theory perspective'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this