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PowerPoint Summary of

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Communication Tools for Understanding Cultural Differences
Copyright © 2006-2007 The Beyond Intractability Project Beyond Intractability is a Registered Trademark of the University of Colorado

and norms Affects the behavior of a relatively large group of people .PowerPoint Summary of: Communication Tools Slide 2: Culture Is a learned set of shared interpretations Is about beliefs. values.

PowerPoint Summary of: Culture and Communication Slide 3: Communication Is the vehicle by which culture is expressed Is directly effected by communication patterns .

at least in part. Cultural Fluency consists of understanding… • What culture is • How it works • The inter-relationship of .Culture .Communication . cultural conflict. Thus cultural fluency and self-knowledge are imperative to resolving conflict.understanding one’s own cultural lenses .Conflict Self-Knowledge .PowerPoint Summary of: Culture and Communication Slide 4: Culture and Conflict Intractable conflict is almost always.

independent of setting * Note: this distinction does not describe a dichotomy.uses implied meanings which arise from the setting • Low Context .focuses on literal meanings of words. but rather poles on a continuum.PowerPoint Summary of: Culture and Communication Slide 5: Importance of Context Communication can be: • High Context . depending on: • The relationships involved • The situation • The purpose of communication . Everyone engages in both.

PowerPoint Summary of: Culture and Communication Slide 6: Context Differences Low-context communicators dealing with high-context communicators should remember: • Nonverbal messages/gestures are important • Status and identity may be communicated nonverbally • Face-saving and tact are important • Building a good relationship may be essential • Indirect routes and creative thinking may be important .

PowerPoint Summary of: Culture and Communication Slide 7: Context Differences II High-context communicators dealing with low-context communicators should remember: • Statements may be taken at face value • Roles and functions may be decoupled from status • A sustained focus on tasks may be necessary • Direct questions are not meant to offend • Indirect cues may be ineffectual .

PowerPoint Summary of: Culture and Communication Slide 8: Community/Autonomy Cultures differ as to the degree of emphasis placed on community versus individual autonomy In Communitarian Settings • People see themselves as part of a circle of relationships • Identity is as a member of a group • In conflict. response is chosen jointly In Individualistic Settings • People see themselves as independent and autonomous • Identity is individual • In conflict. response is individual .

PowerPoint Summary of: Culture and Communication Slide 9: Community/Autonomy II In Communitarian Settings • Maintaining group harmony and cohesion is important • Choices are made in consultation • People are part of a hierarchy • People are accountable to the group In Individualistic Settings • Achievement involves individual goal-setting and action • Everyone is capable of making their own choices • People are autonomous • People are accountable to themselves .

. Individual people and situations will vary widely.PowerPoint Summary of: Culture and Communication Slide 10: Intersections Context/Community intersections: • High-Context cultures are usually communitarian • Low-Context cultures are usually individualistic NOTE: These are broad generalizations.

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