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In this chapter, a broad review is presented that highlights how India is second to cultural diversity to only the continent of Africa. It is a land where many contradictory ideas and practices are synthesized, which makes living here a challenge for sojourners. Three streams of literature that are useful for intercultural training are reviewed. First, cultural practices – greetings, food, attire, driving, and gender issues – that impact everyday life are examined. Next, differences identified in cross-cultural research – political behavior, working in groups, social loafing, and leadership – that impact intercultural interactions in the workplace are presented. Finally, some of the indigenous Indian constructs and theories – Indian concept of self, spirituality, spirituality-based theory of creativity, lajjA as behavioral guide – that help understand the Indian worldview are reviewed and discussed. The chapter ends with a critical incident that provides a concrete example of how values shape business interactions in India. It is hoped that the chapter will serve both trainers and sojourners in learning about India for effective intercultural interactions.
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.
Professor Harry Triandis has contributed to the development of the field of cross-cultural training by developing constructs like isomorphic attribution (Triandis, 1975), methods like culture specific simulators (Fiedler, Triandis, & Mitchell, 1971), theoretical frameworks for developing and evaluating culture simulators (Triandis, 1977, 1984), and applications of individualism and collectivism to cross-cultural training (Triandis, Brislin, & Hui, 1988). This paper examines his contributions by evaluating, both quantitatively and qualitatively, how his work has influenced the field of cross-cultural training and the work of other researchers in this field of study.
In this chapter, the universal theories developed by cultural researchers that can be applied across geographic regions are reviewed. The theories reviewed include early works of Parsons and Shils (pattern variables), Kluckhohn and Strodtbeck (universal human value orientations), and Hall (values associated with time and space). Following this the constructs of tightness and looseness by Pelto, and later Gelfand, a framework for traditional and modern values by Inkles, and later postmodern values by Inglehart, and instrumental and terminal values by Rokeach are discussed. Next, the cultural dimensions presented by Hofstede, individualism and collectivism, power distance, uncertainty avoidance, masculinity versus femininity, which were supplemented by Bond and colleagues’ work (long-term orientation) and Minkov’s work (indulgence versus restraint) are reviewed. House and colleagues’ GLOBE Project and its contributions to Hofstede’s framework is noted. Schwartz and colleagues work on a universal framework of values, cultural complexity, social exchange patterns identified by Fiske, and Social axioms presented by Leung and Bond are also briefly reviewed. The chapter is concluded with a discussion of the implications of cultural theories for intercultural training.
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.