Adoption of communication technologies and national culture

Gert Jan HOFSTEDE

Abstract


This paper investigates the question what attributes of countries influence the differential speed at which they adopt new communication technologies. On the basis of empirical data, it concludes that besides GNP per capita, cultural variables predict the speed of technology adoption. In particular, the cultural dimensions of individualism/collectivism and uncertainty avoidance can be used to predict the ease and speed of changes. Cultures of strong uncertainty avoidance are slow in adopting any new technology. The paper also argues that, contrary to popular belief, the advent of the global village does not lead to the disappearance or even to the lessening of cultural differences between countries. On the contrary, new communication media enable people to strengthen their cultural identities.

Keywords


Communication technology;National culture;GNP per capita

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.9876/sim.v6i3.107

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