Hofstede's cultural dimensions theory is a framework for cross-cultural communication. Hofstede developed his original model as a result of using factor analysis to examine the results of a world-wide survey of employee values by IBM in the 1960s and 1970s. The theory was one of the first that could be quantified, and could be used to explain observed differences between cultures.
The original theory proposed four dimensions along which cultural values could be analyzed: individualism-collectivism; uncertainty avoidance; power distance (strength of social hierarchy) and masculinity-femininity (task orientation versus person-orientation). Independent research in Hong Kong led Hofstede to add a fifth dimension, long-term orientation, to cover aspects of values not discussed in the original paradigm. In the 2010 edition of Cultures and Organizations: Software of the Mind  Hofstede added a sixth dimension, indulgence versus self-restraint, as a result of co-author Michael Minkov's analysis of data from the World Values Survey. Further research has refined some of the original dimensions, and introduced the difference between country-level and individual-level data in analysis.
Hofstede's work established a major research tradition in cross-cultural psychology and has also been drawn upon by researchers and consultants in many fields relating to international business and communication. It continues to be a major resource in cross-cultural fields. It has inspired a number of other major cross-cultural studies of values, as well as research on other aspects of culture, such as social beliefs. In 1965, Geert founded the personnel research department of IBM Europe (which he managed until 1971). Between 1967 and 1973, he executed a large survey study regarding national values differences across the worldwide subsidiaries of this multinational corporation: he compared the answers of 117,000 IBM matched employees samples on the same attitude survey in different...
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