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Regular version of the site

Research Seminar "Cross-Cultural Communication in Asia"

2021/2022
Academic Year
ENG
Instruction in English
6
ECTS credits
Course type:
Compulsory course
When:
2 year, 1, 2 module

Instructors

Course Syllabus

Abstract

The course “Cross-cultural Communication in Asia” is designed for two-year master’s programme students, who major in “Business and Politics in Modern Asia” and prepares them for solving research problems, forms knowledge and practical skills of independent research work related to professional activities, including research work in foreign language. The course provides students with fundamentals of intercultural context together with complex knowledge of modern Asia development. It is also devoted to communication between different cultures and includes the study of theoretical aspects of intercultural communication, covering the key-concepts with a wide variety of cases, supported by a comprehensive reading list. The course will focus on: cross-cultural communication theories and Chinese communication characteristics, the rise of business anthropology in China, negotiating with Chinese partners and framework for cross-cultural understanding, Japanese communication culture, Japanese business system etc. Course also identifies characteristics of Chinese business culture that differ from the Japanese (in the dimensions of “high context” / “low context”, collectivism / individualism etc.). The course sets a background for the further studies of the complexity and increasing heterogeneity of Asian cross-cultural communication styles and future prospects of cross-cultural communication in Asia. Students study lecture materials, prepare seminar presentations, pass KAHOOT and LMS tests on required material, take part in discussions on selected issues.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • The course aims to provide students with the tools they need to create cross-cultural communication skills and gain more success with their employers (mainly, Chinese and Japanese companies).
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • Able to advise individuals, departments and organizations on the development problems of the countries of Asia and Africa, using modern methods of direct and remote (using information and communications technologies) consulting; develop specific proposals for optimizing various types of practical activities.
  • Able to analyze, verify, evaluate the completeness of information in the process of professional activity.
  • Able to build professional activities, business and make choices, guided by the principles of social responsibility.
  • Able to choose consciously interpersonal interaction strategies with representatives of countries and cultural bearers of Asia and Africa.
  • Able to conduct business negotiations in foreign languages (one oriental and English).
  • Able to conduct professional activities (including research activity).
  • Able to conduct written and oral communication in Russian and foreign languages as a part of the professional and scientific communication.
  • Able to determine independently the problem field of research activities in various aspects of Asian and African research.
  • Able to develop independently new methods of research.
  • Able to formulate and justify proposals for joint oriental activity (research, applied research and research-analytical).
  • Able to improve and develop intellectual and cultural level, build a trajectory of professional development and career.
  • Able to organize multilateral communication and manage it.
  • Able to organize the work of a group (collective, team), including a mixed type, consisting of representatives of eastern and western professional communities, to study international political, economic, social and cultural processes in the countries of Asia and Africa.
  • Able to prepare in one Eastern and English languages official business, scientific and informal documents in accordance with the norms of speech etiquette.
  • Able to present the results of professional activities publicly in one oriental and English languages directly in front of the audience and indirectly in the media, in the Internet space.
  • Able to search for information on topical issues in Asia and Africa (including the use of an advanced level of modern information and communications technologies) and process it with the help of modern methods of qualitative and quantitative analysis.
  • Able to solve problems in professional and social activities, taking into account social, socio-cultural, socio-political, ethnocultural and religious differences of the peoples of Asia and Africa.
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Lecture 1. Cross-cultural communication theories and Chinese communication characteristics
    1.1. Hofstede and Trompenaars – pioneers in intercultural research. 1.2. Edward T. Hall and Richard D. Lewis cultural dimensions. 1.3. Academic discussion on the cross-cultural communication in China. Seminar 1. Cross-cultural communication theories and Chinese communication characteristics 1.1. High-versus low-context culture: a comparison of Chinese and American cases 1.2. Chinese as a reactive behavioral category (“fanyingxing”反应型) 1.3. What makes China a high-context culture?
  • Lecture 2. Anthropology and Business in China
    2.1. What is business anthropology and who are business anthropologists? 2.2. The rise of business anthropology in China. 2.3. Anthropological studies of Asian business (China, Japan) Seminar 2. Anthropology and Business in China 2.1. From Economic Anthropology to Business Anthropology: the case of China 2.2. Business anthropology and its perspectives 2.3. Friendships on WeChat: An Emerging business model in China.
  • Lecture 3. Stereotyping in the process of cross-cultural communication with Chinese – theory and practice
    3.1. Factors of stereotyping (explicit/implicit). 3.2. Most common stereotypes about doing business with China and how they could influence your business. 3.3. The phenomenon of Chinese stratagem thinking – understanding Chinese strategic culture. Seminar 3. Stereotyping in the process of cross-cultural сommunication with Chinese – theory and practice. 3.1. A comparative look at Chinese and Russian cultural stereotypes. 3.2. The role of mass media in forming stereotypes (China and Russia cases). 3.3. Chinese regional stereotypes.
  • Lecture 4. Managing business in China: negotiating with Chinese partners and framework for cross-cultural understanding
    4.1. Anthropological approaches to international business 4.2. “Culture” and “Communication” in intercultural negotiations with the Chinese. 4.3. The Chinese style of negotiations (“renjihexie” 人际和谐). Seminar 4. Managing business in China: negotiating with Chinese partners and framework for cross-cultural understanding. 4.1. China's adaptation to international business practices. 4.2. Tactics used by the Chinese in negotiations. 4.3. The intermediary (“zhongjianren” 中间人) and the phenomena of social status (“shehuidengji” 社会等级)
  • Lecture 5. Discourse of East and West cultures in the process of cross-cultural communication
    5.1. Analysis of socio-cultural differences between East and West in doing international business 5.2. How to bridge the gap and use cultural diversity to your advantage. 5.3. Implications of cross-cultural communication in business – East and West models. Seminar 5. Discourse of East and West cultures in the process of cross-cultural communication. 5.1. Cultural differences between East and West in conducting business negotiation (thinking patterns, negotiation style, benefit consciousness). 5.2. Difference in business culture between East and West (Hofstede, four dimensions of culture). 5.3. Is China eastern or western in doing business?
  • Lecture 6. Japanese communication culture
    6.1. Social roles and behavioral patterns in Japanese society. 6.2. Peculiarities of non-verbal communication. 6.3. Peculiarities of verbal communication. Seminar 6. Japanese communication culture. 6.1. Comparison of Japanese and Chinese communication cultures. 6.2. Comparison of Japanese and American communication cultures. 6.3. Comparison of Japanese and Russian communication cultures.
  • Lecture 7. Japanese companies
    7.1. Japanese business system. 7.2. Different kinds of Japanese enterprises. 7.3. Internal organization of Japanese enterprises. Seminar 7. Japanese companies. 7.1. Examples of Japanese big enterprises: their history, organization, work and peculiarities. 7.2. Examples of Japanese SMEs: their history, organization, work and peculiarities. 7.3. Women and Japanese companies.
  • Lecture 8. Japanese international companies outside Japan
    8.1. Japanese international business. 8.2.Organization of Japanese subsidiaries outside Japan. 8.3. Japanese representatives in outside of Japan subsidiaries. Seminar 8. Japanese international companies outside Japan. Examples of Japanese international companies. ( three different companies for three different presentations).
  • Lecture 9. Foreigners and Japanese enterprises
    9.1. Foreigners who are working in Japan. 9.2. Foreigners who are working in Japanese outside of Japan subsidiaries. 9.3. Strategies for successful business communication with Japanese companies. Seminar 9. Foreigners and Japanese enterprises. 9.1. Starting business in Japan as a foreigner. 9.2. Stories of foreigners who are working and living in Japan. 9.3. Doing business with Japanese companies. Examples of successful and unsuccessful business communication.
  • Lecture 10. Japan in the modern world
    10.1. Japanese international policy. 10.2. Japanese ‘soft power’. 10.3. Changing Japan. Seminar 10. Japan in the modern world. 10.1. Japanese changing business culture. 10.2. New Japanese generations and their attitude to work-life balance. 10.3. Foreigners and foreign ideas in modern Japan.
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Presentation (Japan)
    Depending on the number of students, presentations will be conducted in groups by 2-4 students. The time limit for presentation is 20 minutes and should not be exceeded. Students are expected to read literature recommended in the syllabus, as well as to search for extra sources, especially in order to get most recent information on the topic of their presentation. The report begins with the presentation of the topic, abstract and objectives to the audience and ends with conclusions and a list of references. 1. Content of the report - corresponds to the stated topic, fully reveals the topic; - should be made in an academic language; - reporter should present logical and convincing argumentation, complete and reasoned answers to the questions; - lack of factual errors; - reporter should understand the main terms of the report, if necessary – explain their meaning to the audience; - appropriate conclusions to the stated objectives. 2. Presentation design - the presence of illustrative material (maps, diagrams, tables, photos) with an indication of the source; - a list of sources, drawn up in accordance with the requirements. 3. Speech - it is not allowed to read in advance prepared text on any medium; - the roles of the participants are evenly distributed; - compliance with the time limit (20 minutes). NOTE that the highest grade (10) implies the involvement of the audience in the discussion.
  • non-blocking Engagement in class discussions / Test
    Lecturers evaluate students progress, including assigned readings comprehension and contribution to discussions. The component is calculated as an average grade achieved on all seminars. Accumulative marks (min – 0, max – 10) for the participation in class discussions/case-studies are released at the end of the course (before the final assessment takes place).
  • non-blocking Written exam
    The exam for the course will be held in the test format on the LMS platform, includes 30 questions. Regulations: quiz = 1 minute, fill the gaps = 2 minutes, open-ended = 3 minutes. Updating the answer is not allowed.
  • non-blocking Presentation (China)
    Depending on the number of students, presentations will be conducted in groups by 2-4 students. The time limit for presentation is 20 minutes and should not be exceeded. Students are expected to read literature recommended in the syllabus, as well as to search for extra sources, especially in order to get most recent information on the topic of their presentation. The report begins with the presentation of the topic, abstract and objectives to the audience and ends with conclusions and a list of references. 1. Content of the report - corresponds to the stated topic, fully reveals the topic; - should be made in an academic language; - reporter should present logical and convincing argumentation, complete and reasoned answers to the questions; - lack of factual errors; - reporter should understand the main terms of the report, if necessary – explain their meaning to the audience; - appropriate conclusions to the stated objectives. 2. Presentation design - the presence of illustrative material (maps, diagrams, tables, photos) with an indication of the source; - a list of sources, drawn up in accordance with the requirements. 3. Speech - it is not allowed to read in advance prepared text on any medium; - the roles of the participants are evenly distributed; - compliance with the time limit (20 minutes). NOTE that the highest grade (10) implies the involvement of the audience in the discussion.
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (2 module)
    0.1 * Engagement in class discussions / Test + 0.2 * Presentation (China) + 0.2 * Presentation (Japan) + 0.5 * Written exam
Bibliography

Bibliography

Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Alexander Prasol. (2010). Modern Japan: Origins Of The Mind - Japanese Traditions And Approaches To Contemporary Life. World Scientific.
  • Fiona Graham. (2003). Inside the Japanese Company. Routledge.
  • Geert Hofstede, & Gert Jan Hofstede. (2004). Cultures and Organizations: Software for the Mind. McGraw-Hill Education.
  • Harry Irwin. (1996). Communicating with Asia : Understanding People and Customs. Routledge.
  • Jeff Graham, Javed Maswood, & Hideaki Miyajima. (2002). Japan - Change and Continuity. Routledge.
  • Ming Dong Gu. (2018). Why Traditional Chinese Philosophy Still Matters : The Relevance of Ancient Wisdom for the Global Age. Routledge.
  • Mona Chung, & Bruno Mascitelli. (2015). Dancing With The Dragon : Doing Business With China: Vol. First edition. Business Expert Press.
  • Nishiyama, K. (DE-576)18166769X. (2000). Doing business with Japan : successful strategies for intercultural communication / Kazuo Nishiyama. University of Hawai’i Press.

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Claude Lévi-Strauss. (2013). The Other Face of the Moon. Harvard University Press.
  • Croucher, S. M. (2016). Understanding Communication Theory : A Beginner’s Guide. New York: Routledge. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1055331
  • Fiona Graham. (2005). Japanese Company in Crisis. Routledge.
  • Schweitzer, S., & Alexander, L. (2015). Access to Asia : Your Multicultural Guide to Building Trust, Inspiring Respect, and Creating Long-Lasting Business Relationships. Hoboken, New Jersey: Wiley. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=978132
  • Senko K. Maynard. (1997). Japanese Communication : Language and Thought in Context. University of Hawaii Press.
  • Yang, S., Chen, S., & Li, B. (2016). The Role of Business and Friendships on WeChat Business: An Emerging Business Model in China. Journal of Global Marketing, 29(4), 174–187. https://doi.org/10.1080/08911762.2016.1184363