Transnational elites in the city: British highly-skilled inter-company transferees in New York City's financial district

JV Beaverstock*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

379 Citations (Scopus)


Highly-skilled professionals, who circulate within and between transnational corporations as inter-company transferees (ICTs), are important constituents of the global economic system. In Castells' 'Network Society', such labour is referred to as 'managerial elites' but what remains invisible in this meta-narrative is their transnational existence. The aim of this paper, therefore, is to unpack further our understanding of transnational managerial elites by drawing upon a study of British highly-skilled ICTs who were posted from London to New York in the late 1990s. The paper is divided into four parts. Following a discussion of transnational managerial elites in globalisation, the paper highlights the transnational organisational and social networks of these ICTs in New York. The paper then revisits the conceptualisation of transnational managerial elites, suggesting that individual career paths, physical mobility and cross-border connections, ties and business/social networks (both physical and virtual) are key factors which reproduce traits of 'transnationalism' in the city. The paper concludes that major constituents of the transnationalism of managerial elites are the organisational and social networks that stretch across national boundaries, grounded in the translocal of the city.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)245-268
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Ethnic and Migration Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2005


  • transnationalism
  • managerial elites
  • inter-company transfer
  • financial centre
  • Nnew York


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