Hofstede Cultural Difference Critiques

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Introduction: Etic or Emic? At what extent are McSweeney’s critiques valuable? 4

Research Validity 5

Research Reliability: 5

Research Sample 5

Back to Culture 7

Questionnaire and Dimensions 8

History and Research Validations 9

Conclusion 10

Bibliography 12

Introduction: Etic or Emic? At what extent are McSweeney’s critiques valuable?

Arguably, Hofstede’s work (1980, 1997) represents a pioneering approach of culture as a way of comparing international management frameworks. First of all, prior to offering any evaluations in regards to McSweeney’s criticism (2002a/b), it is crucial to identify the nature of Hostede’s work within the entire sphere of the culture approach itself.
In contrast to the guarantors of the
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As McSweeney’s (2002a: 95-99) argues, respondents’ cultural framework is made up by three non-interacting and durable levels of culture (Tab.2).

At the first level, the assumptions which would free this model from any shortcomings would be that there is only one IBM culture and that there is also a common worldwide occupational culture for each job (Hofstede 1980a: 181). What are these assumptions based on?


According to McSweeney (2002a: 96), these assumptions are “too crude and implausible to underpin Hofstede’s emphatic empirical claims” . Following the thread of his argument we come across a situation where assuming that an IBM employee, whether in a developed USA head office or a new opened branch office in Pakistan, will possess the same identical organizational and occupational culture does become hard to encompass. In response to this argument, Hofstede acknowledges that considerable differences exist at the “organizational level” (1991: 93), yet it redefines the entire organizational culture as a mere set of “shared perceptions of daily practices” (1991: 182-3), therefore distancing from the early-stage value-based definition. According to McSweeney (2002b), this is only a failed attempt to deliver a straightforward concept and definition of organizational culture.

Back to Culture

Hofstede’s vision of culture is often linked to two different concepts, unique national tendency and central tendency, respectively. In the
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