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This chapter provides a rationale for this 4th Edition of the Handbook of Intercultural Training. This rationale is situated within a consideration of the impacts of inter-and intra-reginal migration and the impacts on sustainability of broad swathes of the planet. Following that discussion we will present some of the major theories of intercultural training. Lastly we will discuss the structure of the book and provide brief summaries of each chapter.
With the number of international migrants globally reaching an estimated 272 million (United Nations report, September 2019), the need for intercultural training is stronger than ever. Since its first edition, this handbook has evaluated the methodologies and suggested the best practice to develop effective programs aimed at facilitating cross-cultural dialogue and boosting the economic developments of the countries mostly affected by migration. This handbook builds and expands on the previous editions by presenting the rational and scientific foundations of intercultural training and focuses on unique approaches, theories, and areas of the world. In doing so, it gives students, managers, and other professionals undertaking international assignments a theoretical foundation and practical suggestions for improving intercultural training programs.
In chapter 25, changes taking place in our global village are evaluated and how intercultural research and training can both take a lead role in creating the changes and helping people to effectively work with the changes are discussed. The role of economic development, social changes, and the Internet are discussed. Following this, some of the theoretical and methodological innovations that are on the horizon are discussed. Some of the topics identified from the chapters in the Handbook are presented here, which include culture theories, cultural story-telling, social network analysis (SNA), perception, and emotional contagion. Finally, a number of research issues that are of concern in developing a science of intercultural training that is not only produces results that are repeatable but only account for significant amounts of variance. Many more can be identified and will emerge in the future. It is hoped that researchers and practitioners will use the ideas presented in the chapters of the Handbook, to guide future theory-based research and practice in the field of intercultural training.