Nagarathnam, Bharani Babu (2016-11). National Human Resource Development: Review of Research and a Framework for Practice. Doctoral Dissertation. Thesis uri icon


  • Since it was first introduced to the field of human resource development (HRD) more than a 15 years ago, national human resource development (NHRD) has received increasing attention from HRD scholars. This dissertation aimed to identify and systematically examine the body of theoretical and empirical literature on NHRD in order to understand its evolution and current state. A systematic literature review of 104 peer-reviewed journal articles was conducted. The analysis shows that (1) the construct of NHRD was examined at various levels including more than 40 countries, as well as region, city, community and organization, (2) the articles focused heavily on the analysis of NHRD as national policies for human capital development, (3) most NHRD articles are descriptive in nature, focusing on describing NHRD policies and plans, and (4) studies also focused on exploring the role of NHRD in addressing diverse societal issues. Directions for future NHRD research in the areas of theory, content and methodological developments are recommended. Due to the emerging nature of the field, there has been ongoing model development using HRD principles. This dissertation systematically reviewed the body of literature on NHRD model development in order to understand its current state. Additionally, research-to-date on NHRD policies and practices were also reviewed. The review resulted in 15 peer-reviewed journal articles on model development and 38 peer-reviewed journal articles on NHRD policies and practices. Eight thematic areas were identified for successful NHRD design and implementation. Knowledge gaps were identified. A holistic conceptual framework for NHRD policy development, implementation and evaluation is proposed, considering the complex issues of national goals, stakeholders, finance and NHRD context (social, cultural, political and economic). In doing so, this model provides a flexible roadmap and starting point for national human resource planning, implementation and evaluation.

publication date

  • December 2016