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Promoting exchange between East and West management cultures: The role of dialogue

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 February 2015

Muayyad Jabri*
School of Business, Economics and Public Policy, University of New England, Armidale NSW, Australia


This paper calls on cultural studies as a resource for rethinking East and West management cultures. An analysis of East and West management cultures reveals that much of our prevailing knowledge of East and West management cultures is derived from cross-national comparisons of culture. These comparisons are predicated on assumptions of instrumental rationality and the cultural homogeneity of the self with social others, which effectively presume an ontology of the self as stable, enduring, and the same as social others. For promoting exchange between East and West management cultures, there is a need to move beyond this mistaken assumption of ontological ‘sameness’. To achieve this, the paper argues that at least two changes are required: (i) reversing the tendency to treat culture as an entity that is separate from the individual; and (ii) reversing the tendency to treat the narrative identity of the individual as stable and enduring. With a view to realising these changes, the paper proposes the notion of ‘dialogical encounter’ as a means of enabling individuals to be given a role in determining how their culture is ‘made known’ to others.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press and Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management 2009

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