Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Prof. Hofstede to visit New Zealand

In an age of globalisation, multinational corporations and increasing reliance on telecommunications, the question is often posed – are we, as a society, becoming one homogeneous group?

The answer, according to the University of Otago’s School of Business JA Valentine Scholar Emeritus Professor Geert Hofstede, is a resounding “no�?.

“Not at all. What we are finding is that with the increase of global telecommunications and interaction, people are valuing cultural individuality more than ever. It is an important skill now for people to know their own cultural values so that they may interact with people from other cultures who have different values and expectations.�?

Read more: Hofstede

'Mecca to Medina' - New Game to raise awareness of islam

A new game has been launched in the US by games manufacturer, Muslim Games. The game, the manufacturer claims, aims to promote understanding between the East and West and raise cross cultural awareness of the Muslim world. Through playing the game non-Muslims are introduced to topics such as the 5 pillars of Islam, world trading routes and geogpraphy.

Read more: Press Release

what is culture?

"Culture is the fabric of meaning in terms of which human beings interpret their experience and guide their action."
Clifford Geertz
Posted by Neil Payne at 6:58 AM
Categories: Cross Cultural News

doing business in estonia

Estonia, one of the most successful economies of the former Soviet region, is reaching out to do business in the West. However, although geographically close the Estonian culture is one that should be looked into prior to doing business there.

This article from Expatica covers some basics on business culture and etiquette - looking at areas such as relationships, hierarchy, business meetings, negotiating, dress code and business cards.

Read more: Estonia

mentoring service for expat managers in gulf

Career management and outplacement firm BH Careers International has launched a mentoring service that supports expatriate managers across the Gulf region.

Read more: Gulf
Posted by Neil Payne at 6:44 AM
Categories: Expatriate

ethnic minorities struggling with english in wirral

The numbers of schoolchildren in Wirral who do not speak English as their first language has more than doubled in the past four years.

The local education authority now plans to set up a Minority Ethnic Achievement Service to help youngsters who struggle with their English language skills.

Read more: Wirral
Posted by Neil Payne at 6:40 AM
Categories: Language Learning News

internet advertising overtakes radio

On-line advertising exceeded radio's market share for the first time in the UK and totalled £653.3 million in 2004, a year-on-year increase of 60%, spread across all formats of on-line marketing, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau.

Figures published last week by the industry trade group in association with PriceWaterhouseCoopers show that on-line ad spend now accounts for 3.9% of the advertising market, just above radio’s market share of 3.8%.

Read more: Ads
Posted by Neil Payne at 6:34 AM
Categories: Web Globalization

word of the day: malapropos

malapropos \mal-ap-ruh-POH\, adjective:
Unseasonable; unsuitable; inappropriate.

adverb: In an inappropriate or inopportune manner; unseasonably.

Such malapropos wise cracks are driven home with a relentlessly upbeat soundtrack which serenades scenes of human tragedy with bouncy, Disneyesque melodies. --Steve Rabey, "'Noah's Ark' hits bottom: Miniseries suffers from lack of accuracy," Arlington Morning News, May 2, 1999

Posted by Neil Payne at 6:30 AM
Categories: Expand Your Vocabulary

Monday, April 11, 2005

who needs intercultural awareness?

Even though many people understand there is a need for intercultural awareness in our changing world, the question "Well who actually needs intercultural awareness?" continues to pop up.

By way of answering the question, the article "Who Needs Intercultural Awareness?" examines who and why certain people or industries need intercultural awareness. The article poses that a range of people including tourists, people working in multicultural teams (both public and private sector), people who work globally and expats are some of the most needy as their roles involve interacting daily with people from different cultures.

cross cultural quiz - gift giving

A new quiz has been added to the Kwintessential Cross Cultural Quiz page. The quiz asks 10 short questions on gift giving etiquette from a number of countries.

So if you know what colour flowers to avoid in Bolivia, how to accept gifts in China or what to take to a host's house when invited for dinner in Turkey - test your cultural awareness.

Take the Gift Giving Etiquette Quiz
Posted by Neil Payne at 7:45 AM
Categories: Cross Cultural Etiquette

cross cultural differences causing political tensions

Australia's Foreign Minister Alexander Downer has blamed cultural differences for the ongoing row with Papua New Guinea (PNG) over an airport security check performed on the PNG Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare.

PNG has asked for an apology from the Australian Government after Sir Michael was asked to remove his shoes for a routine security check at Brisbane Airport last month.

"You have to understand that there are cultural differences here," Downer explained. "One of the characteristics of Papua New Guinea and Melanesian culture more generally is that they have the notion of what they call the big man, the leaders and chiefs and so on fall into that category. So they expect special treatment for people who fall into that category."

Read more: PNG

Multilingualism for Cultural Diversity and Participation of All in Cyberspace

“Multilingualism for Cultural Diversity and Participation of All in Cyberspace�? is the theme of a thematic meeting in preparation for the second phase of the World Summit on the Information Society, that UNESCO is organizing in Bamako, Mali, on 6 and 7 May 2005, in partnership with the African Academy of Languages (ACALAN), the Agence Intergouvernementale de la Francophonie (AIF) and the Government of Mali.

The Conference builds on the recognition of the importance of cultural and linguistic diversity in the digital world and will highlight the fundamental importance of removing barriers to access and participation of all on the Internet.

Read more: UNESCO

one in four brits would like to emigrate

A quarter of Britons would emigrate if they had the chance, citing the nation’s stressed-out, work-obsessed society as the reason, according to a survey. The main expectations of would-be emigrants were that another country will bring better weather, more efficient transport, a lower cost of living, less pollution and more friendly people.

In a survey of 1,000 adults, a third said their lifestyles were deteriorating as a result of the modern, 24/7 culture. The most common reasons to go abroad included high taxes, pollution, the oppression of women and even unattractive men.

Read more: Escape
Posted by Neil Payne at 7:25 AM
Categories: Expatriate

pentagon paying up for language skills

Pentagon officials are planning to more than quadruple the cap in foreign language proficiency pay, according to the Pentagon’s chief of personnel policy.

The monthly stipend will go from a maximum of $300 per month for both officers and enlisted servicemembers skilled in high-demand languages to a maximum of $1,000 per month, said Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness David Chu. The move is part of a wide-ranging overhaul of the Pentagon’s language capabilities. The “Language Transformation Roadmap,�? includes more than doubling the DOD’s language training budget and perhaps that all new officers must possess some skill in a second language.

Read more: Pentagon
Posted by Neil Payne at 7:14 AM
Categories: Language Learning News

two new internet suffixes

The Internet's key oversight agency gave final approval Friday to two new Internet suffixes: .jobs for the human resources community and .travel for the travel industry.

It could take months, though, for the domain names to start appearing in use, as companies running those names now must set up registration and other procedures.

Read more: MSNBC
Posted by Neil Payne at 7:10 AM
Categories: Web Globalization

word of the day: hagiography

hagiography \hag-ee-OG-ruh-fee; hay-jee-\, noun:
1. Biography of saints.
2. Idealizing or idolizing biography.

She fit a type easily recognized in the annals of hagiography, and it was on that basis that claims for sainthood were made. --Lawrence S. Cunningham, "The Voices of Gemma Galgani," Commonweal, June 6, 2003

Pearce seems to believe he needs to show us that the man was something like a saint. This turns his book into something like hagiography. --Francis Beckett, "G K and A K," New Statesman, February 28, 1997

Posted by Neil Payne at 6:45 AM
Categories: Expand Your Vocabulary

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