Understanding Culture Through Knowledge Cybernetics
Journal of Social and Development Sciences (ISSN 2221-1152) Vol. 9, No. 1, pp. 38-49, March 2018
12 Pages Posted: 4 May 2018
Date Written: April 9, 2018
These days, countries around the world continue with their process of globalization in the digital business and marketing. However, they find themselves straddling different national cultures, which lead to problems of cross-cultural communication management resulting in, for instance, miscommunication and misunderstanding. Consequently, an understanding of the characterisation or mapping of culture is significant, and while there are not many theories of cultural mapping, most stem from the base work of Hofstede. Basically, most people begin with a categorisation of culture through the creation of an ontology that differentiates relatable levels of reality, as a theory of levels allows culture to be broken down into parts that can be analysed more easily. It also helps them to facilitate the creation of a set of generic or universal dimensions of culture which can be used to map different cultures. However, a problem with this theoretical approach is that it does not offer a very dynamic representation of culture, and it has manifestations that impoverish the way that phenomenal manifestations of culture can be explained. On the other hand, there is an alternative approach was adopted by Schwartz. This approach does not discuss ontology but it creates a value inventory in which respondents assess ‘comprehensive’ cultural values. Consequently, there is some relationship between outcome of Hofstede’s and Schwartz’s results. Yolles has developed a theory of Knowledge Cybernetics that delivers a new ontology and a dynamic modelling approach. Schwartz’s results have been merged into this, resulting in a new theory dynamic theory of culture quite distinct from Hofstede’s level theory.
Keywords: cross-cultural management, cultural mapping, knowledge cybernetics
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation