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Common Ground - Routledge

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Chap.4–Comparative Cultural Metrics
Global Public Relations
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Why comparative culture matters
Culture is to society what personality is to the individualThe last thing a fish notices – is water; we need to understand our own cultureUnderstanding central tendencies helps us prepare for cross-cultural encountersRisk of applying “one-size-fits-all” western model to all situations
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High- vs. Low-Context
High-context message takes into account:Setting and circumstancesRelationshipsAttitudes, opinions, history, shared experiencesLow-context message is limited to explicit code (verbiage)Message is isolated from sender and context
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Extended Comparisons
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Individualism vs. Collectivism
The extent to which individual autonomy is viewed favorably or unfavorablySocietal expectations of individual roles and responsibilitiesAffects professional relationships, audience analysis, public motivations/ values, message construction, etc.
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Extended Comparisons
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Power Distance
Degree to which institutional and organizational power should be distributed among members of societyExtent of institutionalized social and class inequalitiesCould be based on age, birth, gender, merit, wealth, occupation, etc.Impacts business aspects such as degree of formality, decision-making process, etc.
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Uncertainty Avoidance
Adaptability to change and uncertaintyTolerance of ambiguity; need for structurePredicts risk tolerancePredicts preference for rulesAffects processes of confrontation, negotiation
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Masculinity/Femininity
DoesNOTreflect gender preference or dominance“Masculine” cultural values are assertiveness and achievement“Feminine” cultural values are nurturance and social supportLow masculine societiesdovalue gender equality more
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Other Comparative Metrics
Task vs. relationship orientationChronemicsPoly- or Mono-Long-term vs. short-term focusFuture vs. past orientation
ProxemicsHaptics(touching)Occulesics(meaning of eye movements)Kenisics(non-verbals)
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Other considerations
How does culture define public relations?How are gender roles viewed?What stereotypes do you have of another culture? What stereotypes might they have of you?
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Become a “Third-Culture” Practitioner
Transcend boundaries through education, exchanges, etc.Spend time outside your own cultureBecome an “agent of change”
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Common Ground - Routledge