Get access

Offshoring Professional Services: Institutions and Professional Control


  • Kyoung-Hee Yu is at the Australian School of Business, University of New South Wales. Frank Levy is at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.


We examine the reasons why one might expect it to be more difficult to offshore professional work than manufacturing work in a globalized world. We then provide data on the variations in a specific case — the offshoring of diagnostic radiology from the USA, UK and Singapore. We show that existing theories on the ‘offshorability’ of jobs have not captured how national institutions and occupational regulations continue to define professional work. We then review the question of supply from India's perspective and report that both macro-institutional and organizational contexts make it complicated for Indian doctors to supply much of this service.