This is the "Cross Cultural Research" page of the "Cultural Diversity in Business" guide.
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Cultural Diversity in Business   Tags: business, cultural diversity  

Last Updated: Feb 9, 2017 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

Cross Cultural Research Print Page

Step 1 - Scope

Step 1

Write down the initial scope of the task. Break down complex questions into multiple individual ones.

  • What does the assignment tell you to include?
  • What do you need to find out?
  • What does your reader or listener need to know to understand the topic?
  • What questions need to be answered?

Step 2 - Types of Sources

Step 2

Make strategic choices to locate appropriate information sources. Business decisions are based on indicators of expertise in the subject matter and credibility. The mere presence of a source in Google results is not an indicator of authority, credibility, or quality. Look further.

  • What interested parties might produce the needed information? Scholars? Organizations? Governments? Industries?
  • What level of authority / credibility is required by your professor? Subject expertise (verifiable business expertise / scholarship)? Societal position (public office or title)?

Business decisions are generally based on trade information, government information, or scholarly information. This is what your professors prefer you to use.

  • Is the article / book / website / etc. written FOR business professionals by qualified, experienced business professions (trade information)?
  • Is the article / book / website / etc. written by a professor, researcher, or scholar (scholarly information)?
  • Is the article / book / website / etc. written by a governmental organization or official (government information)?
  • If the article / book / website / etc. is written for an audience of everyday people (Lonely Planet, for example), the information will probably not be appropriate for these assignments.

If you can't verify the source's authority and credibility, move on.

Information sources vary in content, relevance, and value, depending on the needs of your search. 

  • Try multiple sources - if one doesn't work, another might.
  • Search as broadly and deeply as necessary to gather the needed information.
  • Try Library sources before Google - the Library pays for your access because the good stuff usually costs money.

Match your topic to the sources below.



    Step 3 - Searching

    Step 3

    Search efficiently.

    • Use phrase searching to get only results containing a specific phrase, such as "Hofstede's cultural dimensions." Phrase searching puts quotation marks around the phrase you want to find. Use only phrases your would read in an article or on a website.
    • Insert AND between search terms to broaden the results if more are needed.
      • Hofstede AND "uncertainty avoidance"
      • "uncertainty avoidance" AND "Japan"

      Country and Cultural Information

      • CultureGrams World Edition  
        CultureGrams provides country reports that go beyond mere facts and figures to deliver a one-of-a-kind perspective on daily life and culture, including the background, customs, and lifestyles of the world's people. The reports are written and reviewed by in-country experts and are updated as new information becomes available. World Edition-Cultural reports for more than 200 countries. Each includes 25 categories such as Land and Climate, History, Personal Appearance, Greetings, Dating and Marriage, Family, Diet, Housing, Holidays, Economy, Education, Health, and more.

        Type your country's name into the "Search within this publication box".
      • BBC Country Profiles  Icon
        The BBC is the world's leading public service broadcaster. Its mission is to enrich people's lives with programs that inform, educate and entertain. BBC World Service broadcasts to the world on radio, on TV and online, providing news and information in 27 languages and world service English language. Full profiles provide an instant guide to history, politics and economic background of countries and territories, and background on key institutions. They also include audio and video clips from BBC archives.

        Select a country, territory or international organization from the menus.
      • Country Insights | Centre for Intercultural Learning
        Cultural information on dozens of countries from Canada's largest provider of cross-cultural and international training services.

        In addition to country information, cultural information including conversations, communication styles; display of emotion; dress, punctuality & formality; preferred managerial qualities; hierarchy and decision-making; religion, class, ethnicity, & gender; relationship-building; privileges and favouritism; conflicts in the workplace; motivating local colleagues; recommended books, films & foods; in-country activities; national heroes; and stereotypes.

        Select a country using the drop-down menu.
      • Country Profiles - Global Guide to Culture, Customs and Etiquette  Icon
        Much of what we do at Commisceo Global Consultancy is designing training courses for business and organizations worldwide, in all languages, across sectors. What we believe is unhealthy is the type of cultural awareness education that is simmered down to knowing dos and don'ts or learning a list of bullet points on how to negotiate. This is just information. This is skin deep and in fact, we argue, it’s counterproductive as it reinforces stereotypes about a people and closes doors to alternative levels of understanding and more importantly ways of thinking. We take a different route. We emphasize self-critique, skills based cultural understanding and experiential learning. Our focus is more on creating ‘global mindedness’.

        Scroll down the page and choose a country.
      • CountryWatch Country Reviews  Icon
        CountryWatch is an information provider for corporations, government agencies, and universities needing up-to-date information on each of the recognized countries of the world. It provides critical country-specific intelligence and data to clients including public and private sector organizations with overseas operations and global interests. Its management has extensive international business experience and the members of the editorial department have strong academic backgrounds. The team has created this suite of products covering demographic, political, economic, business, cultural and environmental subject matter.

        When the search loads, add your country's name (e.g. AND China) and limit the date range to the last few years.
      • Culture Crossing Guide  Icon
        Culture Crossing is a global consulting organization dedicated to innovative solutions for people working in challenging global contexts. The company designs and facilitates programs for global executives and managers to build essential skills such as cross-cultural communication, leadership, team building, sustaining employee engagement, diversity and inclusion, and international recruiting and staffing. The Culture Crossing Guide is a database of cross-cultural information about every country in the world. The information is submitted by people who are either natives or residents (or former residents) of the featured countries. All of the information posted on the website is vetted by a Culture Crossing staff member and checked for credibility by cross referencing with at least two other sources. Brief, basic information is presented about social gestures and business.

        Select your country from the drop-down menu.
      • CIA World Fact Book  Icon
        The World Factbook, produced for US policymakers and coordinated throughout the US Intelligence Community, marshals facts on every country, dependency, and geographic entity in the world. It is used by a wide variety of people including US Government officials, researchers, and corporations. The Factbook provides information on the history, people, government, economy, energy, geography, communications, transportation, military, and transnational issues for 267 world entities. In addition to information on government, the economy, and communications, the Factbook provides extensive demographic information.

        Select your country from the drop-down or click the map.

      Business, Economics, & Politics

      • Country Commercial Guides  Icon
        Look no further than the U.S. Commercial Service’s Country Commercial Guides, written by U.S. Embassy trade experts worldwide….. An excellent starting point for everything you need to know about exporting and doing business overseas detailing 8 important weigh stations on your export journey: business travel; market overview, challenges, opportunities & entry strategies; political environment; selling U.S. products and services; leading sectors for U.S. exports and investment; trade regulations, customs and standards; investment climate statement; trade and project financing.

        Choose a country from the drop-down menu.
      • Doing Business In...  Icon
        HLB International is a leading network of independent professional accounting firms and business advisers with member firms well-established locally and mostly ranked among the top 12 nationally. Member firms provide businesses with corporate finance advice and support across a range of issues, drawing on the resources, expertise and experience from around the world. HLB International's member firms provide or have provided services to such well-known names as General Electrics, Siemens, Gazprom, Veolia, Huawei, Chronopost International and Tatneft. A series of country-specific booklets, designed to give some general information to those contemplating doing business internationally, has been prepared for the use of clients, partners and staff of HLB International member firms.

        Select your country from the list.
      • U.S. Bilateral Relations Fact Sheets  Icon
        Current information from the US State Department about diplomatic and economic relations between the US and other countries.
      • ABI/INFORM Complete ByProQuest  
        Suggested search terms:
        your country's name AND choose a search term from the assignment
        "South Korea" AND management
        Pakistan AND gender AND business
        "South Korea" AND "decision making" AND business

        "South Korea" AND corporate culture
        Pakistan AND "organizational behavior"

        using the left side toolbar, limit by Source Type to academic journals and trade journals
        using the left side toolbar, limit by date (last 5 years)
        using the left side toolbar, choose additional limiters under Subject
        try some of the terms found under Subject as search terms
      • Business Source Complete  
        Suggested search terms:
        your country's name AND choose a search term from the assignment
        "South Korea" AND management
        Pakistan AND gender AND business
        "South Korea" AND "decision making" AND business

        "South Korea" AND corporate culture
        Pakistan AND "organizational behavior"

        using the left side toolbar, limit by date (last 5 years)
        using the left side toolbar, limit the Source Types to academic journals and trade publications
        using the left side toolbar, choose additional limiters under Subject: Thesaurus Term
        try some of the terms found under Subject: Thesaurus Term as search terms
      • Databases A-Z  Icon
        Check here for additional sources.


      • Country Comparison of Hofstede's Cultural Dimensions  Icon
        Hofstede's model of national culture consists of six dimensions. The cultural dimensions represent independent preferences for one state of affairs over another that distinguish countries (rather than individuals) from each other. The country scores on the dimensions are relative, as we are all human and simultaneously we are all unique. In other words, culture can be only used meaningfully by comparison. Compare country scores on Hofstede's 6 cultural dimensions.

        Please select a country in the dropdown menu above to see the values for the 6 dimensions. After a first country has been selected, a second and even a third country can be chosen to be able to see a comparison of their scores.
      • ABI/INFORM Complete ByProQuest  
        Suggested search terms:
        Hofstede AND dimensions

        your country's name AND Hofstede
        Hofstede AND dimensions AND "South Korea"

        your cultural dimension AND your country's name
        "uncertainty avoidance" AND Pakistan

        Kluckhohn AND Strodtbeck
      • Business Source Complete  
        Suggested search terms:
        Hofstede AND dimensions

        your country's name AND Hofstede
        Hofstede AND dimensions AND "South Korea"

        your cultural dimension AND your country's name)
        "uncertainty avoidance" AND Pakistan

        Kluckhohn AND Strodtbeck

      Step 4 Use the Information

      Step 4

      A good business report or paper synthesizes the information, interprets its implications, and draws conclusions.

      Organize the information in meaningful ways - check the assignment for clues from your professor.

      • Can be organized by topics
      • Can be organized chronologically
      • What is most effective for your purpose?

      Analyze the information gathered. Maintain an open mind and a critical stance.

      • Is the information adequate to answer the questions posed in Step 1?
      • Is every point of information relevant to the questions?
      • Are there gaps or weaknesses in the information?
      • Do you need additional information?

      Synthesize information from multiple sources.

      • Combine information from different sources that covers the same topic.
      • Create a coherent narrative without being repetitive.

      Evaluate and explain the significance of the information you presented.

      • How does it answer the information needs?
      • What are the implications of the information for the business matter at hand?
      • What conclusions can be drawn that will inform decision making?
      • What do the conclusions mean for decision making?


        Step 5 Cite Your Sources

        Information has value. Respect the original ideas of others; give credit to others through proper attribution and citation.

        Cite CultureGrams:

        Argentina (Argentine Republic). (2015). In CultureGrams world edition. Retrieved from

        Cite the CIA World Factbook:

        Central Intelligence Agency. (2016). Brazil. In The world factbook. Retrieved from

        Cite a web site:

        Global Affairs Canada. (2011). Overview – Brazil. Retrieved from


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        American Culture

        Cover Art
        American Cultural Baggage - Stan Nussbaum
        Call Number: MAIN E169.1 .N8155 2005
        ISBN: 9781570756252
        Publication Date: 2005-09-01
        American Cultural Baggage helps non-Americans better understand how Americans "tick" while showing Americans how the actions and attitudes they take for granted can be taken very differently in the rest of the world.


        APA PowerPoint


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