Factors Contributing to Expatriate Adjustment to Life in Malaysia

  • Teddy Kok Fei Lian Department of International Business, Faculty of Accontancy and Management, Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR), Malaysia
  • Li Yen Lim Department of International Business, Faculty of Accontancy and Management, Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR), Malaysia
Keywords: cultural intelligence, language ability, open-mindedness, tenure in Malaysia, expatriate adjustment


The objective of this study is to determine the factors contributing to expatriate adjustment to life in Malaysia. Drawing on the conservation of resources theory and previous research, the independent variables of cultural intelligence, language ability, open-mindedness, tenure in Malaysia, previous overseas experience and monthly income, are used in this study to predict expatriate adjustment. A survey questionnaire was developed and analysis done on 80 expatriates from four industries in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor. Results of regression analysis using the PROCESS software showed that cultural intelligence, language ability open-mindedness, tenure in Malaysia and gender explained 76.2% of the variance in expatriate adjustment in Malaysia. Furthermore, tenure in Malaysia moderated cultural intelligence. However, previous overseas assignments and monthly income did not have any relationships with expatriate adjustment. The applicability of the conservation of resources theory to explain expatriate adjustment is clearly established in this study as all the variables that are significant predictors of expatriate adjustment are resources.


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How to Cite
Lian, T. and Lim, L. (2020) “Factors Contributing to Expatriate Adjustment to Life in Malaysia”, Malaysian Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities (MJSSH), 5(9), pp. 16 - 29. doi: 10.47405/mjssh.v5i9.469.