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Books : Foreign Relations, Cross-Cultural Assignments

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Send us your suggestions This selective directory of books on foreign relations and cross-cultural topics for international business is provided in association with as a convenient source of books which may be of interest.   The search tool at left enables you to look up any books, magazines, videos or DVD's directly on their website, rather than by following our own suggestions.  Direct links for review and purchase of specific items are found through the topic sections and subtopics below.  The logo image at right links to their home page.

Please refer to the Disclosure section below for instructions if you wish to buy any of the suggested items, and Suggestions if you think we should add or remove anything.  Refer also to our Global Contacts directories.

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Suggestions have been organized into the following 8 pages, which contain the subtopics listed below.  Note that some topics overlap.
Asia Pacific Americas Europe, Africa, Middle East Global Direct Investment Foreign Relations and Assignments Executive Reference Other Issues for Management Economic Development
China Brazil European Union "Globalization", Transnational Business Impact Diplomacy, Foreign Policy, the Foreign Service, Intelligence General Management Corporate Facility Design Economic Development
India and South Asia Mexico and NAFTA Eastern Europe Sustainable Development Cross-Cultural Communications, Non-Verbal Communications Strategic Planning Technology Transfer & Intellectual Property Urban Planning, Migration, and Rural Economic Development.
Southeast Asia Pacific Investment in the USA and Canada Russia Foreign Direct Investment Foreign Assignments & Languages Corporate Finance Knowledge Management Website Design
Japan, Korea Central & South America and Caribbean Middle East and Africa International Trade US Law, Trade,  Immigration, International Law      
"Buy From ..." is a quick way to add items of potential interest to your shopping cart on , which you can then review before buying this or any other selections. Book (or media) title

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We welcome your suggestions of additional items which you have found to be helpful.

New Suggestions Our abstract / comment Author Published Suggested by
Location Location Location : A Plant Location and Site Selection Guide

ISBN 1-890586-11-0

Contact us about how to buy a copy

This guide to corporate expansion planning shares the insights of a veteran leader of global business site selection consulting for location choices by corporate executives. Prof. Em. Marcel De Meirleir - Biographic profile of the author March 2006 Bruce Donnelly

Marcel was the founder of Plant Location International in Brussels, and has assisted many leading corporations with their expansion plans around the world.

Exporting America : Why Corporate Greed is Shipping American Jobs Overseas This highly respected business news anchor attracted a lot of attention during the 2003-2004 period leading up to the US elections through his criticism of business outsourcing in a very popular feature series, "Exporting America".

Whether one agrees with all his analysis and conclusions or not, it is an important contribution to the need for a more informed debate on not only the public policy and long-term social and economic impacts of outsourcing and globalization in general, but also the role of corporate leaders and their business and social responsibilities.

The basic premise is that outsourcing jobs to other countries will ultimately be harmful to American interests despite any short-term business cost savings.

Lou Dobbs, anchor and managing editor of CNN "Lou Dobbs tonight", with popular feature stories on "Exporting America"

Whatever the show ratings were, this special feature resonated with many viewers as a very hot topic during the US election in particular.

2004 Bruce Donnelly

This book also attracted many very thoughtful reviewer comments.

It's interesting that the ones which agreed with Dobbs' basic premise and analysis seemed to give more thoughtful reviews, while some of his critics just bashed his position or the book without much substance.  That is, frankly, consistent with what he already reported from viewer and business editor reactions to his programs.

See our detailed comments about this book

  Investing in Peace : How Development Aid Can Prevent or Promote Conflict Retired USAID officer with experience in various countries and with UN programs looks at the role of development programs in places which are prone to conflicts - both where they have happened or have been avoided. Robert Muscat 2002 Bruce Donnelly
  Breaking the Real Axis of Evil : How to Oust the World's Last Dictators by 2025 By a retired career diplomat and Vice Chairman of Freedom House.  Advocates efforts to spread democracy as a foreign policy objective to help people replace their tyrants.  A few down already, but many left to go. Ambassador Mark Palmer 2003 Bruce Donnelly
  A Journey through the Cold War : A Memoir of Containment and Coexistence Career diplomat looks back at the events of a long career inside the policy-making circles since the 1950's Raymond Garthoff 2001 Bruce Donnelly
  Voice of America : A History Insights into an organization which ties diplomacy and journalism together as a publicly funded media channel reaching millions of people worldwide despite being unknown to most Americans. Alan Heil Jr. 2003 Bruce Donnelly
Diplomacy, Foreign Policy, the Foreign Service, and Intelligence        <top> <bottom> Our abstract / comment Author Published Suggested by
cover Special Providence: American Foreign Policy and How It Changed the World


  Walter Russell Meade, Richard Leone 2002 Bruce Donnelly
cover The Tragedy of Great Power Politics


  John Mearsheimer 2003 Bruce Donnelly
find out more information The Paradox of American Power : Why the World's Only Superpower Can't Go It Alone


  Joseph Nye Jr. 2003 Bruce Donnelly
cover Turbulent Peace : The Challenges of Managing International Conflict


Essays by many analysts about dealing with conflicts, edited by a former Assistant Secretary for African Affairs in the US State Dept Edited by Chester Crocker et al 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Democracy, Morality, and the Search for Peace in America's Foreign Policy


Collection of thoughts by many leaders, compiled by former US Senator David Boren and a former US Ambassador, Edward Perkins, both now at the University of Oklahoma.  See their prior work below, and for the Middle East, above. Edited by David Boren and Edward Perkins 2002 Bruce Donnelly
cover Preparing America's Foreign Policy for the 21st Century


Earlier work, companion to the above. Edited by David Boren and Edward Perkins 1999 Bruce Donnelly
cover Theodore Rex


Worth reviewing the history of Theodore Roosevelt's impact on US foreign policy and the world, which is still important a century later Edmund Morris 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Founding Brothers : The Revolutionary Generation


Few things in history are inevitable.  Individuals still transform the world through their decisions.  Overview of a remarkable period of US history and issues which still shape the country more than two centuries later. Joseph Ellis 2000 Bruce Donnelly
cover John Adams


More insights into the revolutionary era of the US David McCullough 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Breakthrough International Negotiation : How Great Negotiators Transformed the World's Toughest Post-Cold War Conflicts


Outcomes of negotiations are not always what they seem, or as conclusive, as the current events show regarding prior negotiations with North Korea and others.  Even so, and even if one might dispute who the "great" negotiators really are, it is worth reviewing this analysis of such important work, and the process. Michael Watkins and Susan Rosegrant 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Negotiating Globally : How to Negotiate Deals, Resolve Disputes, and Make Decisions Across Cultures


Applicable to business, rather than just government. Jeanne Brett 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Pax Democratica : A Strategy for the 21st Century


Argues that the leading western democracies share common interests which they need to pursue jointly rather than separately as a sort of one world vision (but not world government).  Realistic or not, it's another contribution to the debate about the way forward. James Robert Huntley 2001 Bruce Donnelly
find out more information A Strategy for Stable Peace : Toward a Euroatlantic Security Community


Another work envisioning collaboration between the US, Europe, and Russia as the way forward, published by the US Institute of Peace. Ambassador James Goodby et al 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Digital Diplomacy : US Foreign Policy in the Information Age


Rejects thesis about "telediplomacy" from a knowledgeable perspective, favoring how technology can be used instead to enhance the work of diplomacy Wilson Dizard Jr. 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Why Peacekeeping Fails


Comparison of experiences in Angola and Mozambique by a retired Ambassador with a long Foreign Service career who has been openly critical of the State Dept and the Bush administration policies in particular Ambassador Dennis Jett 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Does America Need a Foreign Policy?


Not always, for every issue, as other Secretaries of State have indicated before him.  This is a useful overview of current issues around the world. Henry Kissinger 2001 Bruce Donnelly


American Political Tradition and the Men Who Made It


Interesting review of key US political figures in history with more balance than some interpretations, and recognition of the constraints or environment they faced at the time, rather than judgment with 20-20 hindsight Richard Hofstadter 1989 reissue Bruce Donnelly


First Great Triumph : How Five Americans Made Their Country a World Power



Account of the late 19th century era, sometimes referred to as the era of "Manifest Destiny", when the US took more of a proactive, expansionist stance under President Theodore Roosevelt.  Although a fairly brief period in history, it had a dramatic impact, and still shapes some foreign perceptions about our policies and responses to global challenges a century later. Warren Zimmerman 2002 Bruce Donnelly
The US Foreign Service Our abstract / comment Author Published Suggested by
A Pretty Good Club- The Founding Fathers...

out of print, limited availability

A Pretty Good Club : The Founding Fathers of the US Foreign Service


Insights into how the US Foreign Service became what it is today, and perceived as obstructive by President Roosevelt in the period before WW II, which has been a hard image to shake over the subsequent decades. Martin Weil 1978 Bruce Donnelly
The Japanese Thread- Thirty Years of...

out of print, limited availability

The Japanese Thread : A Life in the US Foreign Service


Another McCarthy era victim, like the China hands, with a distinguished career in Japan and elsewhere, such as in Tokyo during the year of Pearl Harbor John K. Emmerson 1978 Bruce Donnelly
cover Consular Tales


Personal stories from career work as a consular officer in the US Foreign Service William S. Shepard 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Foreign Service Tales


More personal stories of Foreign Service life ?  Not yet reviewed, probably interesting William S. Shepard 2002 Bruce Donnelly
Tales of the Foreign Service

out of print, limited availability

Tales of the Foreign Service


A collection of real life stories by members of the Foreign Service who found themselves in the middle of dramatic events during their careers.  The various scenarios help to understand life in the Foreign Service. Edited by Ralph Hilton 1978/1980 Bruce Donnelly
The China hands - America's foreign...

out of print, limited availability


The China Hands : America's Foreign Service Officers and What Befell Them


As US interest in China picks up again, it is worth remembering what happened in the McCarthy era to the Foreign Service Officers who foresaw before and during World War II the changes in China which others refused to believe, and then were blamed for their insights in the superficial "who lost China?" debate in the US, as though it had somehow been ours in the first place, or within their ability to alter the course of events in China.

Consider the implications throughout Asia for the damage that was done to US relations with China during that era (impact on the Korean War, Vietnam, etc.), and the loss of some of our best experts.  Never again?  Some of the best experts in the Foreign Service have been driven into early retirement in recent years, too, at what cost to our capabilities and interests today?  It is probably far too early to judge the consequences, but we are back in another cycle of trying to rebuild the base of expertise through recruitment of new officers, after disrespecting the talent in which we had invested.

E.J. Kahn Jr. 1972 Bruce Donnelly
China Scapegoat- The Diplomatic Ordeal...

out of print, limited availability


China Scapegoat : The Diplomatic Ordeal of John Carter Vincent


See the China section, above, for background on this and other books about the "China hands" who were driven out of the Foreign Service for their very accurate reporting and analysis during the Revolution in China.  There are still lessons in that McCarthy era experience for those who aspire to Foreign Service careers, because this "who made the mistake?" mentality still persists in the public, media, and Congress whenever international events do not develop as we might wish. Gary May 1979 Bruce Donnelly
The Diplomats

out of print, limited availability


The Diplomats : The real people behind the events in an unreal world


This is an interesting analysis of more than just the US Foreign Service, as the author interviewed many diplomats of various countries about their work through research involving over 600 interviews in 20 countries over a period of 5 years.  One of the interesting opening comments was that there were less than 75,000 people in the diplomatic services of all the countries in the world put together (at that time), which is smaller than some of the leading professional service firms which support the interests of global corporations today.

Imagine the impact if all those professionals in public and private service could work together better for mutual benefit as they pursue their respective self-interests.  A first step is to better understand each other.

Martin Mayer 1983 Bruce Donnelly
  Overtime in Heaven This one isn't even listed on, but you may find it gathering dust in some libraries.  Written by respected journalists, the premise behind the title was the old saying that Foreign Service Officers will have to hope that they get their overtime in heaven, because they'll never see it paid in this world.  Basically another collection of some really compelling "war stories" about the challenges of Foreign Service life. Marguerite Higgins, Peter Lisagor   Bruce Donnelly

find out more information

Fires in the In-Basket : The ABC's of the State Department


Old, but still interesting background for those interested in the Foreign Service. John Leacocos 1977 Bruce Donnelly
A Diplomatic History of the American... A Diplomatic History of the American People


I guess there was never a further update to this book, which was in the 10th edition in 1980 by Prentice-Hall publishers, but it remains an excellent overview of US diplomatic policies and activities from the start of the country to the present times.  If there is an update, perhaps by a new name, I would like to find it.

Many Americans are completely unaware of much of this history, but leading officials and businesspeople in other countries are more likely to be aware of how this history has played out in their areas.  It can therefore be useful background to get the US perspective on actions which may often be perceived (or taught) in other countries quite differently, or as directly contrary to their own national interests, especially as those with political or other agendas try to distort our history and criticize our policies and actions for own purposes. 


Thomas Bailey 1980 Bruce Donnelly

This is a good, objective historical overview, warts and all, which can help executives to respond in a knowledgeable way to questions or criticism by foreign contacts, whether defending the history or not, and can help to understand why people in other countries do not always perceive our policies and actions in the same context as we do.  They often remember the impact of decisions on their own countries which Americans have never even learned about, or have long since forgotten or dismissed as an anomaly or mistake from another era, or a different political party.  They are also sometimes far more uninformed, or misinformed, about US policy and history than they believe themselves to be, since they may have been taught by very biased sources.

  Foreign Relations of the United States


Historical collections of original documents from diplomatic correspondence, selected and organized by the Office of the Historian at the US Dept of State after most such items are finally declassified, typically after 30 or more years.  The books are available through the US Government Printing Office, which has a bibliography of all the available volumes at


US Dept of State various - series of books Bruce Donnelly

This can be a fascinating resource for researchers or anyone else who is interested in a behind-the-scenes look at how major world events and our policies and interests were perceived at the time by top diplomatic officers.  They are generally organized by the years which they cover (as documents are declassified) and the region of the world.  For example, recent works typically cover the late 1960's.  Hopefully the US GPO will someday make current and past publications in this series available electronically for research purposes.

Intelligence    <top> <bottom> Our abstract / comment Author Published Suggested by
cover Body of Secrets


Electronic intelligence is very important to national security, as events have repeatedly demonstrated.  The capability needs to be protected and supported.  This work illustrates the value with specific examples. James Bamford 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover The Puzzle Palace


By the same author as Body of Secrets, this book addressed the same topic 20 years ago. James Bamford 1982 Bruce Donnelly
Sub Rosa- The CIA and the Uses of...

Out of print -

Sub Rosa : The CIA and the Uses of Intelligence


Personal account from the operational level showing the importance of clandestine human intelligence work. Peer de Silva 1978 Bruce Donnelly
find out more information The First Directorate : My 32 Years in Intelligence and Espionage Against the West


The view from the other side.  No big secrets shared, but interesting context for those who think human intelligence actions or needs ended with the Cold War. Oleg Kalugin 1994 Bruce Donnelly
The Sword and the Shield- The Mitrokhin...

The Sword and the Shield : The Mitrokhin Archive and the Secret History of the KGB


While a certain degree of skepticism about details or completeness should still surround any such archives from a KGB organization skilled in self-preservation and disinformation, this is still interesting background. Christopher Andrew, Vasili Mitrokhin 1999 Bruce Donnelly
find out more information Facing Reality : From World Federalism to the CIA

0819125598 - newer version, same book

Although somewhat dated by a focus on the Cold War aspects of intelligence related to the Soviet Union, this is another personal account of an intelligence career which helps to illustrate the importance of such work. Cord Meyer 1980 Bruce Donnelly
cover The U.S. Intelligence Community


Useful overview Jeffrey Richelson 1999 4th Ed Bruce Donnelly
cover The Ultimate Terrorists


Harvard professor's book about the current risks, written before 9/11 with other nightmare scenarios such as concern about weapons of mass destruction in particular.  Not the ultimate expert, or the last word on the subject, but timely perspective on the issues. Jessica Stern 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Terrorism and US Foreign Policy


Brookings Institution study of the ongoing struggle by a former US Army and CIA officer Paul Pillar 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover Origins of Terrorism : Psychologies, Ideologies, Theologies, States of Mind


A more recent work by an author who has provided thought leadership on this topic for decades, whether you agree with everything he says or not. Walter Laqueur 1998 Bruce Donnelly
Out of print

a Completely...


Terrorism : A Study of National and International Political Violence

An updated version was issued in 1987


The original was 0316514705


There are obviously more recent works on this subject, but this 25 year old study, including explicit concern about future risks such as terrorist use of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons, should remind Americans that this problem is not really a new one.  Decades of neglect as the problem got worse are not going to be reversed quickly by use of military power, but one has to start somewhere to show that we are as serious about destroying the terrorists as they are about destroying the civilization and free lives which we enjoy.

Like the Cold War, this is largely a hidden struggle in the shadows, not on the front pages, radio, or TV news, which is where many terrorists want to get the coverage that amplifies their terror capabilities to mythic levels, or arouses sympathy and support for their causes.  It isn't particularly challenging, nor does it require great skill, to organize people to destroy things or kill many people, especially in a free and tolerant, diverse society where it can be hard to identify and track down such threats. 

By contrast, note how Arabs stand out among Afghans as outsiders, or how Americans stand out in Saudi Arabia, whereas Arabs can blend into Washington DC, New York, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, or most other major US cities as ordinary citizens, immigrants, or visitors of no particular concern to anyone as long as they don't break the law - which is as it should be.  Indeed, as recent events have shown, terrorists can even blend into small, suburban communities.

Walter Laqueur 1977 Bruce Donnelly

The same is true of terrorists from any region, which is why the US is not a very "hard target", and is appealing to terrorists for the global visibility and illusion of power an attack can bring to their cause.  As a "superpower" target, we face a unique global threat which does not lend itself to multilateral solutions, even though terrorism is a threat to people everywhere, because the enemy typically doesn't really want to negotiate or achieve some specific, attainable goal, which makes it very different from traditional wars.  We have to deal with it forcefully because we are the most high-profile target, with or without the global support that would always be welcome to create a far stronger global network against terrorism than the terrorists can develop against us.

One can only hope that the public perception now that this is not "somebody else's problem", which it never was, will persist as terrorism and the struggle against it evolves, particularly since success can be so hard to measure or even reveal, while the "failures" are obvious.

The Ultimate Weapon- Terrorists and...

Out of print

The Ultimate Weapon : Terrorists and World Order


0688082777 in paperback


This study by a Harvard scholar drew the unwelcome conclusion that terrorism flourishes because it works as a tactic.  Note that this, and the above study by Walter Laqueur, preceded some of the more memorable attacks against US embassies in that era (Iran, Libya, Pakistan, Lebanon, etc.), and before the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan led to further terrorist problems there.


Jan Schreiber 1978 Bruce Donnelly

There was no causality from such research conclusions (i.e., making matters worse), since the terrorists and their supporters were already convinced that it worked for their purposes.  This was more of an appeal to government leaders to recognize that the problem was not an isolated one that would soon or easily go away, but rather a tactic that was likely to get much worse.

Cross-Cultural Communications   (see also Foreign Assignments)     <top> <bottom> Our abstract / comment Author Published Suggested by
cover Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands: How to Do Business in Sixty Countries


Tips for behavior Terri Morrison et. al 1995 Bruce Donnelly
cover Gestures : The Do's and Taboos of Body Language Around the World


Body language is important, too Edited by Roger Axtell 1997 Bruce Donnelly
cover Do's and Taboos Around the World : A Guide to International Business


Entertaining, anecdotal examples compiled by The Parker Pen Company which illustrate common pitfalls to which executives should be sensitive. Edited by Roger Axtell 1985, 1993 Bruce Donnelly
cover Beyond Culture


Hall's various writings are classics in this specialty, despite some redundancy between them Edward Hall 1977 Bruce Donnelly
cover The Silent Language


As above Edward Hall 1973 Bruce Donnelly
The Hidden Dimension

The Hidden Dimension


As above.  Cultural differences in personal space. Edward Hall 1990 Bruce Donnelly
Foreign Assignments and Languages            <top> <bottom> Our abstract / comment Author Published Suggested by


Realities of Foreign Service Life


Although the focus is on the challenges of family life in the US Foreign Service, the same basic issues often arise for executives on foreign assignments Edited by Melissa Brayer Hess 2002 Bruce Donnelly


The Foreign Service Institute - various language training books and cassettes, usually divided into two or more sets (basic and more advanced) as a course.

A sample from a search for "Foreign Service Institute" on is shown in the links at left.  This is not a recommendation of specific titles in the series.  You should review the comments of buyers, and will find far more books than appear in this short list (around 70 at the time this was written).

Whether you need to study Cantonese, Arabic, Swahili, Brazilian Portuguese, Korean, or some other language, look into these if you want to attempt self-study.  They are very good, but definitely not for everybody.

This series is designed for serious, intensive language training classes which are usually a full time job for almost six months to prepare to live and work in the country.  In effect, one crams into six months what one might learn through four years of university classes.  A native speaker would normally guide the instruction through a total immersion approach, as if living in the country already, which is very hard at first.  The style of instruction therefore differs significantly from some of the more popular products for serious tourists or those who just want to learn a few key phrases to get around.

The Foreign Service Institute (US Dept of State) various, mostly in the 1980's and early 1990's, but be aware that some books are repackaged versions of much earlier works without updates Bruce Donnelly

In addition to those which were more widely published as commercial products, you may be able to get others through the US Government Printing Office, such as for some of the more difficult languages.  They have been promoted in the past through advertisements such as "Speak German like a diplomat! ", which isn't really accurate, since the Foreign Service language training includes more than the use of these books and tapes.

It would be nice if, in this multimedia age, the FSI series would be updated to CD-ROM's and perhaps integrated with other aspects of such training, such as general cross-cultural (and non-verbal communication) training and country background studies, plus insights about doing business in the country, with bibliographies for further research as at FSI.  That would be a great service to executives, but seems unlikely.


  A Personal Safety Guide for International Travelers The Lee Group ( ) provides security consulting for international safety.  The author is a former diplomatic security service agent. Edward Lee 2002 Bruce Donnelly
cover The Global Road Warrior : 85 Country Handbook for the International Business Traveller


see and for details Joe Reif 1998 Bruce Donnelly
cover Survival Kit for Overseas Living: For Americans Planning to Live and Work Abroad


Tips for expatriate assignments Robert Kohls 2001 Bruce Donnelly
cover So You're Going Overseas


Tips for expatriate assignments Stewart Black 1998 Bruce Donnelly
  A Moveable Marriage : Relocate Your Relationship Without Breaking It Information for families moving internationally; see also website Robin Pascoe 2003 Bruce Donnelly
cover The Expert Expatriate : Your Guide to Successful Relocation Abroad - Moving, Living, Thriving


Refer to the AAFSW website ( ) of the Associates of the American Foreign Service Worldwide.  Written by two Foreign Service spouses who also edited "Realities of Foreign Service Life" Melissa Brayer Hess and Patricia Linderman 2002 Bruce Donnelly

find out more information

The Accidental Diplomat: Dilemmas of the Trailing Spouse


The challenges facing a spouse and family when an executive is assigned to another country should be carefully considered. Katherine Hughes 1998 Bruce Donnelly
Inside a U.S. embassy - how the Foreign... Inside A U.S. Embassy : How the Foreign Service Works for America


A new version will be available from AFSA in January, with stories which help people to envision the work which is done at embassies.  This can be helpful to executives who may not understand the many roles of the Foreign Service, and how that work affects them.

AFSA - edited collection of many articles 1995, with new version in 2003 Bruce Donnelly
cover Bush Hat, Black Tie : Adventures of a Foreign Service Officer


Anecdotal accounts from a career in the US Foreign Service Howard Simpson 1998 Bruce Donnelly
  Food Soldier A personal memoir of a long career in the Foreign Agricultural Service Howard Steele 2002 Bruce Donnelly
  Serving America Abroad : Real-Life Adventures of American Diplomatic Families Overseas A collection of anecdotal stories about their US Foreign Service careers by retirees who had many different roles. Irwin Rubenstein 2003 Bruce Donnelly
find out more information Welcome Home: Who Are You? Tales of a Foreign Service Family


Anecdotal accounts from a career in the US Foreign Service Gene Schmiel 1998 Bruce Donnelly
US Law and Immigration, International Business Law            <top> <bottom> Our abstract / comment Author Published Suggested by


International Business Transactions in a Nutshell


Available from Thomson West legal publishers at .  The "Nutshell" series is aimed more at non-lawyers or law students, and can help to understand the potential legal issues to consider. Michael Gordon, John Spanogle Jr. 2000 Bruce Donnelly


International Trade and Investment In A Nutshell


See above.  Includes topics such as import and export restrictions and controls, European Union business competition rules, and steps to protect against foreign investment losses. Michael Gordon, John Spanogle Jr. 1996 Bruce Donnelly


Immigration Law and Business

see their website

Also from Thomson West legal publishers.  May be helpful to HR executives at major companies looking to employ foreign nationals in the US,  including tax aspects prepared by Baker & McKenzie.  Reference notebooks, updated semiannually.  Not cheap, or a substitute for professional advice, but can help to better understand the many considerations involved. Sam Bernsen 1983, updated semiannually Bruce Donnelly


Immigration Law and Procedure in a Nutshell


See above, from Thomson West "Nutshell" series.  Overview of immigration law, visa standards, deportation and exclusion, refugee and asylum status, citizenship and the rights of foreign nationals in the US.  Aimed more at law students, but may also be helpful to HR executives and employees affected by such issues, including compliance requirements for employers. David Weissbrodt 1992 / 1998 Bruce Donnelly


European Union Law in A Nutshell


See above, from Thomson West.  Emphasizes the external impact of EU law, such as for US trade and business competition law, and how EU law works. Ralph Folsom 1999 Bruce Donnelly


NAFTA in a Nutshell


See above, from Thomson West.  Not just for US firms, this addresses external legal perspectives as well. Ralph Folsom 2001 Bruce Donnelly
  Intellectual Property and Unfair Competition in a Nutshell See above, from Thomson West.  Reference guide overview of issues such as unfair competition, antitrust, consumer protection, regulated industries, trade secrets, intellectual property and trademarks. Charles McManis 2000 Bruce Donnelly


Land Use in a Nutshell


See above, from Thomson West.  May be of interest to economic development professionals involved in land use issues (legal aspects of development regulation, zoning, taxation, planning processes, controls).  May also be of interest to non-US executives who are trying to understand these issues for their project approvals. Morton Gitelman and Robert Wright 1994, updated 2001 Bruce Donnelly


Law for Business, 8th Ed.


Commonly used as a textbook for university classes in business law, available at university bookstores or directly from the publisher, McGraw-Hill Higher Education, at or 800-262-4729 (which may not work for foreign callers, who can order by email through ) A. James Barnes, Terry Dworkin 2003 Bruce Donnelly


Employment Law for Business


Also a legal textbook from McGraw-Hill, as above, which may interest HR executives in the US as well as foreign executives planning to set up US operations as a basic overview.  There may well be better choices - I haven't searched intensively for them. Bennett, Alexander, Hartman 2001 Bruce Donnelly


Legal Landmines in E-Commerce


A business school legal textbook from McGraw-Hill as above, again useful for an overview of the issues from the perspective of practicing attorneys in this niche, intended for MBA programs, executive education, etc. David Canton, of Harrison Pensa LLP, and John Millar, of The Attache Group 2003 Bruce Donnelly
Note that some of the books may be out of print and unavailable for purchase, but are still listed because copies may be found in major libraries.  There is also a separate section which highlights magazines and professional associations related to this market, as well as governmental sources.

 We may provide links to other sources as appropriate (consultants, US Government publications, United Nations, The World Bank, etc.).  For example, consultants and development agencies may publish major surveys or research reports which are useful, but not available through

We welcome additional suggestions.  Please note that our intended focus is to find items with enduring or timely insights which can be applied to the needs of corporate executives, professional service providers, or area representatives in this niche of corporate development and investment.

We are not trying to compile a "best-seller" list, or selections which are primarily academic research (analysis without clear application to business decisions), journalistic (superficial, hot news of the moment), or not very objective (unless that bias is important for executives to understand).  This is intended to be a list which makes it easier to find practical "thought leadership" publications quickly and easily for a selective range of topics.

If you wish to contribute your opinions about any of the publications, please do so through the process for book reviews so that others may share your insights and find such resources.  We welcome your comments about the reasoning behind your suggestions to us, or feedback about the appropriateness and practical value of our prior selections from your perspective, but we will not generally publish such comments here. 

If you wish to be identified as the source of a specific suggestion, we can only do that with your explicit permission (name, title, and organization).  Otherwise, we will typically use only a generic identifier to characterize the source, such as "a location consultant", "an M&A advisor", "a CEO", etc.

The presence of a book or other media in this list does not represent an endorsement by us of such materials or their content.  Although this is a selective list, and we may specifically include publications which are contrary to our own views or experience.  Our purpose is simply to make it easier for our many contacts to find useful reference materials and make their own decisions, as we do through our many website listings.

For example, we may disagree with some authors, but respect their research work or their presentation of a different point of view, and feel that users of this website can form and share their own opinions as book reviewers.  We think that professionals in this niche can contribute in a very positive way to important debates on sustainable development, "globalization", urban and rural development, the "brain drain" effect of migration, the impact of transnational corporations on developing countries, technology transfer, intellectual property rights, and other topics related to foreign direct investment and economic development on which there are no easy answers.  If you contribute good book reviews, then other users of can directly benefit from your experience as another professional perspective on these important topics, and perhaps thereby also become aware of your organization if you wish.

Disclosure : You can support our work by purchasing items directly through these links to specific publications, or by shopping for items at in general (including anything else you may find after following one of these links).  This does not affect your price at, but we earn a small referral fee for your purchase. 

The referral fees we would receive are 15% for purchasing the items directly following one of the publication links we provide (without shopping on other pages before adding the publication to your shopping cart), or 5% for buying other items through after following these links.  

Examples : If you follow the cover link, browse around for other ideas such as their related book suggestions, and then still buy the item we suggested, we only get 5%.

If you first add an item to your cart by using the "Buy From" quick links we have provided, and then shop around or review additional product details to reconfirm that our suggestion is what you are seeking, we get 15% (and if, after you shop around a little, you decide to remove it from your cart, we get zero, or 5% of whatever else you choose).

Likewise, if you are going to buy multiple items from this list of suggestions, we won't get the 15% referral fee on more than one unless you actually return to our pages and then follow our links back to the other choices, such as by using the "Buy From ..." links repeatedly.  If you track down the same books through their pages, or go to their many other services before making the purchase, we would just get 5%. 

If you wish to support our work, you may therefore wish to consider how you place your orders.  Add an item to your cart right after you follow the link, if you think you are interested, and then you can remove it later if you change your mind after closer review of other comment, such as their sample pages, alternative book suggestions, or book reviews.  If their further content persuades you to buy something else instead, or to not buy an item we suggested, then we haven't really earned the higher fee level by the referral.

Any income from such purchases are purely incidental to our work, but this helps to confirm that users of this website are finding this referral service to be useful, so that we can justify the work involved to maintain and improve it.  It also provides a very easy and private way for us to monitor whether interest in this feature is rising or falling (by the volume of fees) as we maintain it.  We do not track who uses this page, who buys what, or who follows which link.  We respect your privacy.  Any income received just indicates in a tangible way whether, taken as a whole, our many contacts appreciate and are using this referral service.  If we earn the 15% referral fee very often, that suggests users are making a special effort to reward our work by paying attention to the above details about how rewards their referral sources.  Thank you for your consideration.

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