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Cross-cultural or intercultural?

July 5, 2009

DSCN2726 I thought it would be worth having a look at the terminology as these two terms are often used interchangeably. The term most commonly used seems to be “cross-cultural”.    There is “cross-cultural training” that aims to raise “cross-cultural” awareness in people “working across cultures”. The emphasis is on the “gap” between different cultures and how to “bridge” it.  It has the sense of moving from one way of perceiving the world towards including another culture’s framework. When we talk about “intercultural communication”, the simple definition is: communication between people from different cultures. The nuance is that “intercultural” emphasizes integration rather than the gap. That’s why my company, iglobal coaching ltd, focuses on Intercultural Consulting.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Haike permalink
    July 24, 2009 11:08 pm

    i like the idea of integration rather than separation, building on the best of different cultures instead of managing across a cultural divide.

  2. July 24, 2012 6:11 am

    This reminds me of my brainstorming of the definition of “multicultural” — very similar! 🙂

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