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Chinese Culture in a Cross-Cultural Comparison

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Edited By Michael B. Hinner

Chinese culture has a very long and extraordinary tradition. With China’s rapid economic growth and a population of more than one billion people, China has become a very important market for many companies. In order to conduct business in a particular country, it is necessary to also understand the culture of that country. After all, culture influences people’s behavior and communication – also in the world of business. That is why an understanding of a country’s culture is crucial when communicating with all relevant stakeholders including its consumers, businesses, employees, and government authorities. This eighth volume of the Freiberger Beiträge seeks to provide some essential insights into Chinese culture to help improve transactions and relationships with Chinese stakeholders. The contributing authors help explain the various facets of Chinese culture revolving around communication, business negotiations, and conflict management.
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A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Chinese and Japanese Communication Styles: Focusing on Small Group Discussion

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By Teruyuki Kume, Noriko Hasegawa, Hongtao Zhang

Teruyuki Kume, Noriko Hasegawa, and Hongtao Zhang note that China has become a very important nation today. It is, therefore, more likely that one will communicate with Chinese citizens at the interpersonal, organizational, and international levels than ever before. That is why it is necessary to understand China and its people and explore how to effectively communicate with the Chinese. One way to do so is to study Chinese culture, but that is supposedly changing due to various socio-economic-political factors. Communication styles, though, can offer a clue as to how people think and perceive the world around them, the authors point out. Thus, the communication style can be an important indicator of culture.

Consequently, Kume, Hasegawa, and Zhang compare and contrast the communication styles of the Chinese with those of the Japanese. China and Japan share a number of cultural values due to mutual interaction in the past which influenced religious, ethical, and philosophical aspects of Japanese culture. So it does not come as a surprise that both share a number of cultural values revolving around interpersonal relations such as a sense of duty, piety, or face are shared by both cultures. Japanese culture is also familiar with the Chinese characters used for writing and reading as elements of Chinese medicine.

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