PowerPoint Summary of: Communication Tools for Understanding Cultural

PowerPoint Summary of: Communication Tools for Understanding Cultural Differences Copyright 2006-2007 The Beyond Intractability Project Beyond Intractability is a Registered Trademark of the University of Colorado PowerPoint Summary of: Communication Tools Slide 2: Culture Is a learned set of shared interpretations Is about beliefs, values, and norms

Affects the behavior of a relatively large group of people PowerPoint Summary of: Culture and Communication Slide 3: Communication Is the vehicle by which culture is expressed Is directly effected by communication patterns PowerPoint Summary of:

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

ones own cultural lenses PowerPoint Summary of: Culture and Communication Slide 5: Importance of Context Communication can be: High Context - uses implied meanings which arise from the setting Low Context - focuses on literal meanings of words, independent of setting * Note: this distinction does not describe a dichotomy, but rather poles on a continuum.

Everyone engages in both, depending on: The relationships involved The situation The purpose of communication 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 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. Individual people and situations will vary widely.

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