International Business Administration
Professor: Hans Hahn
Summer Semester 2014
Cultural Dimensions of Geert Hofstede: Analysis of Colombia
Soraya A. Suarez I.
Register Number: 969800
Darmstädter Landstr. 64
Tel: 0176- 708 59654
4. Cultural Models and Cultural Dimensions
4.1 Geert Hofstede's Cultural Dimensions
4.1.1. Power Distance Index
4.1.2. Uncertainty Avoidance Index
4.1.3. Individualism vs. Collectivism
4.1.4. Masculinity vs. Femininity
4.1.5. Long vs. Short-term Orientation
4.1.6. Indulgence vs. Restraint
Table of Figures
Colombia Facts & Figures
Colombian Population According to Ethno-cultural Identity
Colombian Culture through the 6-D Model
With the arise of globalization, the issues about cultural dimensions are of extremely significance to understand cultural differences. It is important that these aspects could be analyzed to contribute to the improvement in the interactions between cultures in the different global contexts, for instance, in the business relations with countries like Colombia.
The aim of this paper is to analyze the cultural dimensions of Prof. Geert Hofstede, author mentioned in the lecture Cultural Diversity, examining them in the Colombian background. Therefore it starts by introducing the meaning of culture with reference to the points of view of different authors and scientist mentioned in the lecture as well, then general details about Colombia are described. Additionally, Cultural Dimensions of Hofstede within the framework of cultural identity are mentioned in reference to the facts and characteristics of the culture of the country under examination. Finally this exam paper ends with a conclusion of the remarked features.
To go into the topic of the cultural dimensions and the case of Colombia, it is important to touch on the diverse definitions of culture of different authors.
Clyde Kluckhohn and W. H. Kelly (1945) see culture “as all the historically created designs for living, explicit and implicit, rational, irrational, and nonrational, which exist at any given time as potential guides for the behavior of men” (p. 97). This theory explains that culture are all the patterns that people create as a part of their life and that are present at all times.
Moreover, Geert Hofstede (1984) considers culture as "the collective programming of the mind which distinguishes the members of one category of people from another" (p. 51). That means, that culture is a software, which impregnate us since our childhood from our parents and from the environment that surrounds us. When we become adults those beliefs and behaviors that we learned are stucked into our subconscious, so that we perceive them as normal. Culture is also seen as a collective process, because you feel identified into a group of people who share the same learned patterns and who have the same cultural training or apprehension.
More recently, Edward T. Hall (1987) has referred to cultures as “unified wholes in which everything interrelates” (p. XVIII). He believes that „any culture is primarily a system for creating, sending, storing and processing information. Communication underlies everything”(p. 3). According to Hall, communication is one of the most important aspect of culture. In this sense, it is not only defined as the language people use, but also words, material things and behaviors.
It is complex to define culture. “Culture has been defined in a number of ways but most simply, as the learned and shared behavior of a community of interacting human beings” (Useem & Useem, 1963, p. 169).
For going deeper into...
References: Hofstede, G. (1984). National cultures and corporate cultures. In L.A. Samovar & R.E. Porter (Eds.), Communication Between Cultures. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.
Hofstede, G. (2006): Lokales Denken, globales Handeln – Interkulturelle Zusammenarbeit und globales Management (3. Edition) München: dtv
Kluckhohn, C., & Kelly, W.H
Hall, E. T. (1987) Hidden Differences Doing Business with the Japanese. Anchor Books.
Useem, J., Useem R., & Donoghue J. (1963). Men in the Middle of the Third Culture: The Roles of American and Non-Western People in Cross-Cultural Administration, Human Organization 22(3).
Luis F. Potes, „Megadiversidad“ http://www.prodiversitas.bioetica.org/nota63.htm (Junio 11, 2005)
„Colombia, Climate“, Enciclopaedia Britannica, http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/126016/Colombia/25348/Climate
Hudson, R. A. (2010). Colombia, a country study. Washington D.C. http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/pdf/CS_Colombia.pdf
„Countries and their Cultures, Colombia“ (2014) http://www.everyculture.com/Bo-Co/Colombia.html
„La Violencia Sexual en Colombia; Un arma de guerra“, OXFAM, http://www.oxfam.org/es/policy/violencia-sexual-colombia (September 9th, 2009)
„Happy Planex Index Data“, New Economic Foundation
„Who gets the most time off, by law?. Mercer (2013). http://www.mercer.com/insights/think/2014/who-gets-the-most-time-off-by-law.html
„Abstencionismo en Colombia alcanzó el 60 % en las elecciones presidenciales „, Prensa Libre
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