Communication and challenges in international co-operation Key factors and analysis of a communication interplay

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1 Communication and challenges in international co-operation Key factors and analysis of a communication interplay IRUAS Annual Conference January 22, 2015 Dr. Wiltrud Weidinger Co-Head IPE

2 Structure Introduction and framework Intercultural communication model Goals and contents of co-operation Differences on various levels Dimensions of communication Example of an interplay in communication Insights 2

3 Framework Intercultural communication (competence): broad field of research and publication Gudykunst 1995/2002, Kim 1995, Novinger 2001, Scheitza 2009, Moosmüller 2009, Arasaratnam & Doerfel 2005, Hu & Weiwei 2011, Barmeyer 2009, Ting-Toomey & Chung 2012, Hofstede 1984/2001/2005/2013, Milenkovic 2011, Kiss 2008, Okun et al Different perspectives Anxiety/uncertainty management theory (Gudykunst 1995/2002) Personal network approach (Kim 1986) Systems-theory approach (Kim 1991, 1995, 2002) Social skills perspective (Martin and Hammer 1989) Identity negotiation perspective (Ting-Toomey 1993) Knowledge host culture and attitude towards the other culture (Wiseman et al. 1989) 3

4 Various related areas International and cross-cultural communication Interracial and minority communication Intercultural competence (trainings and diagnosis) Intercultural competence diagnosis Different dimensions/orientations of culture 4

5 A model for intercultural communication? - content meaning - relational meaning - identity meaning (Ting-Toomey & Chung 2012) 5

6 Goals Contents Geography Capacity building and knowledge transfer Initiating, realising and evaluating projects in education Principles of development co-operation Democracy and human rights education Job-orientation training for students Life Skills and selfcompetences Migration, mulitlingualism Transition and development countries Regions in or after crisis Immigration countries of Middle/Western/Northern Europe 6

7 International co-operation: Partners and regions International partners: Ministries of Education (and implementing bodies) Universities and Teacher Training Institutes National NGOs Supra-national organisations Countries: (S)EE: SRB, HR, BIH, KOS, MK, AL, GR, RO, UKR AFRICA: Ghana, Tanzania IMMIGRATION COUNTRIES: CH, D, A, GB, NOR... 7

8 Differences on various levels Historical and political context General values within society Different perspectives of the individual s role in society Role of national institutions and organisations Power, hierarchies and decision-making processes Time Management (Kiss 2008, Milenkovic et al. 2011, Hofstede 2001/2005) 8

9 Methods Case study by project Content analysis via document analysis s, reports and working papers Discussion notes, protocols from joint work meetings, notes of de-briefing meetings Observation notes Theoretical framework: Hofstede s cultural dimension model (2005) including two additional dimensions (Kiss 2008; Soares 2007) Analysis and interpretation by theoretical process model (adapted from HA operations: Van de Ven 1995; Rodon et al. 2012) 9

10 Dimensions of communication 1. Power Distance/Power closeness 2. Collectivism/Individualism 3. Responsibility/Commitment 4. Time and space 5. Uncertainty avoidance 6. Face and face saving (Hofstede 2001/2005/2013; Weidinger 2014, Kiss 2008), Novinger 2001; Okun et al. 1999; Milenkovic et al. 2011) 10

11 1. Power distance/power closeness Question: How are power and inequality dealt with within a society? Tendency: (S)EE countries show a high level of power distance Description Strong centralisation: «orders from above» Experience: Shift towards activity, pro-activity and innovation means a rapid 11

12 2. Collectivism/Individualism Question: How are individuals integrated in society? Tendency: (S)EE countries show a high value of collectivistic traits Description: Loyalty and high long-term orientation has priority High responsibility Experience: Affecting human resource placement innovation can be endangered 12

13 3. Responsibility/Commitment Question: How do individuals take over action and initiative? Tendency: (S)EE low values (correlating with high value in collectivism and power distance) Description Strongly connected to collectivistic perspective Experience: Challenge when two extreme positions come together 13

14 4. Time and space Question: How do individuals handle time? Tendency: (S)EE countries show the tendency of a more polychronic perspective Description polychronic vs. monochronic perspective Experience: Short-term orientation of job-related issues (long-term orientation within sub-groups) 14

15 5. Uncertainty avoidance Question: How much do individuals feel threatened by uncertainty? Tendency: (S)EE countries show a high level, connected with rigid belief systems, need for rules Description Safety and security have strong influence on individual motivation Experience: Strong effect on decision-making of strategic and sustainable milestones 15

16 6. Face and face saving Question: How much value/standing does the person have in the eyes of others? Tendency: (S)EE countries show a high tendency in face saving Description Includes power, insider and outsider relations, humour and respect Experience: No direct confrontation 16

17 Example of an interplay in communication DOCCU: Development of citizenship competences in Ukraine Project partner: National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) Goal: Supporting the development of democracy education: Trainings for teachers, school principals and civil servants Implementation via a cascade-model (multipliers) in 3 regions (Kiev, Bila Tserkva, Odessa) 17

18 Interaction/action IPE NAPA Cultural Context IPE NAPA Example of an interplay: Process model Culture of local institution (NAPA) Culture of IPE/PH Zurich Local institution (NAPA) action/interaction IPE/PH Zurich operations (Van de Ven & Poole 1995; Rodon et al. 2012) 18

19 Interaction/action IPE NAPA Cultural Context IPE NAPA perception: «experts tell us what to do» Collectivism Time and space Responsibility Concept of teamwork and development of experts on eye-level partners don t take over responsibility and are not interested passive listening and lethargy use of the term «joint development of training plans» (workshop in ZH with PM + senior experts) pushing for the initiative (future funding), activation, giving out tasks to formulate plans to experts 19

20 Interaction/action IPE NAPA Cultural Context IPE NAPA Hierarchical structures: boss decides what is best Face and face-saving: «Why do they not accept what we have done?» Feeling of disrespect towards joint development, no sharing of concepts and missing transparency Top-down production of seminar plans (400 pages in Ukrainian) UA experts change training plans completely and take out CH presentation slots; 2nd group left everything to CH Organised workshop in ZH with ALL UA experts; seminar plans adapted according to innovative approach in inservice teacher training Power distance Uncertainty avoidance Face Saving 20

21 How can we use our interpretations? (www.hopespeak.com) 21

22 Insights Continuous reflection of our own communication and its influence by societal and cultural contexts Reflecting communication processes with experts during different stages of the project Defining «soft moments» where we have to become active to fulfil expectations of... What is associated and meant with «innovation» in education? Our own donors and what is connected with outcomes, outputs and activities? Co-operation and co-operative culture between the partners 22

23 Defining «soft moments» in order to Prevent personal violations Prevent and act against corruptive behaviour Support our general principles of development co-operation such as rights-based approaches, empowerment, participation, sustainability, accountability Keep our goal of capacity building in the target context 23

24 «Culturally-fluent approach» We do not communicate in the same way day to day: factors like context, individual personality, mood etc. interact with the variety of cultural influences Perfecting ourselves in effective communication skills Working over time to understand that communication varies across cultures and time 24

25 25

26 Bibliography Arasaratnam, Lily A. & Marya L. Doerfel (2005): Intercultural communication competence: Identifying key components from multicultural perspectives. In: International Journal of Intercultural Relations 20 (2005) Online under [ ]. Barmeyer, Christoph J. 2009: Coaching von Führungskräften in interkulturellen Kontexten. In: Otten, Matthias, Alexander Scheitza und Andrea Cnyrim (Hg.): Interkulturelle Kompetenz im Wandel. Band 1: Grundlegungen, Konzepte und Diskurse. Berlin: Lit Verlag. Gudykunst, W.B. (1995): Anxiety/Uncertainty Management (AUM) theory intercultural adjustment training. Intercultural Communication Theory (8-58). Thousands Oaks. CA: Sage. Gudykunst, W.B. (2002): Intercultural communication. In W.B. Gudykunst & B. Mody (Eds). Handbook of international and intercultural communication ( ). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Hofstede, G.; Hofstede G.J. (2005/2011): Lokales Denken, globales Handeln. Interkulturelle Zusammenarbeit und globales Management. 5. Auflage. Beck: dtv. Hofstede, G.; Hofstede, G.J. (2013): The Hofstede Centre. What about Romania? Romania in comparison with the below. Online under [ ]. Hu, Yanhong & Fan Weiwei (2011): An exploratory study on intercultural communication research contents and methods: A survey based on the international and domestic journal papers published from 2001 to In: International Journal of Intercultural Relations. www Kim, Y.Y (1991): Intercultural communication competence: A systems-theoretical view. In S. Ting-Toomey & F. Korzenny (Eds.): Cross-cultural interpersonal communication ( ). Newbury Park, CA: Sage. Kim, Y.Y. 1995): Cross-cultural adaptation: An integrative theory. In R.L. Wiseman (Ed.): Intercultural communication theory ( ). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Kiss, Gabriella (2008): A theoretical approach to intercultural communication. In: AARMS Vol. 7, No.3 (2008) Online under: [ ]. Martin, J.N. & M.R. Hammer (1989): Behavioral categories of intercultural communication competence: Everdy communicators perceptions. International Journal of Intercultural Relations. 13, Milenkovic, M. et al. (2011): Interkulturelle Aspekte Die Kulturdimensionen von Edward T. Hall, Geert Hofstede und Fons Trompenaars. Handout Universität Basel. Online under ius.unibas.ch/typo3conf/ext/x4eunical/scripts/ handlefile.php?file [ ]. Moosmüller, Alois 2009: Interkulturelle Kommunikation: quo vadis? In: Otten, Matthias, Alexander Scheitza und Andrea Cnyrim (Hg.): Interkulturelle Kompetenz im Wandel. Band 1: Grundlegungen, Konzepte und Diskurse. Berlin: Lit Verlag. Novinger, T. (2001): Intercultural Communication. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press, Okun, B.F. ; J. Fried & M.L. Okun (1999): Understanding Diversity. A Learning as Practice Primer. Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole Publishing, Rodon, Juan; Josep F. Maria Serrano & Cristina Gimenez (2012): Managing cultural conflicts for effective humanitarian aid. In: Int. J. Production Economics 139 (2012) Online under: [ ]. Scheitza, Alexander 2009: Interkulturelle Kompetenz: Forschungsansätze, Trends und Implikationen für interkulturelle Trainings. In: Otten, Matthias, Alexander Scheitza und Andrea Cnyrim (Hg.): Interkulturelle Kompetenz im Wandel. Band 1: Grundlegungen, Konzepte und Diskurse. Berlin: Lit Verlag. Soares, Ana Maria; Minoo Farhangmehr & Aviv Shoham (2007): Hofstede s dimensions of culture in international marketing studies. Online under: [ ]. Ting-Toomey, Stella; Leeva C. Chung (2012): Understanding Intercultural Communication. Second Edition. New York/Oxford: Oxford University Press. Van de Ven, A.; M.S. Poole (1995): Explaining development and change in organizations. Academy of Management Review 20 (3), Weidinger (2014): Acquiring competences for life: JOBS Job orientation training for businesses and schools in Romania. Experiences on implementation from a transcultural point of view. In: Revista de Pedagogie, Anul LXII, Nr. 1, Institutul de Stiinte ale Educatiei. Wisemann, R.L. ; M.R. Hammer & H. Nishida (1989) : Predictors of intercultural communication competence. International Journal of Intercultural Relations. 13,

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