Overview of Cultural Values
This book is the second volume on the impact of culture-based values on political economy issues. The first volume, Cross Cultural Analysis of Values and Political Economy Issues ( Voich and Stepina, eds., Praeger, 1994), provided some introductory material and a general overview of the research issues for this chapter. While the first book primarily dealt with reviews of relevant literature and historical surveys of values and political economy issues, this book focuses on the analysis of empirical data. These empirical data were compiled in eight countries throughout the world through a lengthy survey questionnaire administered by faculty peers in each respective country. These faculty collaborated as members of the International Consortium for Management Studies that was organized in 1989. The eight countries represented in this empirical research are Chile, the Federal Republic of Germany, the former Soviet Union, Japan, the People's Republic of China, the United States, Venezuela, and Yugoslavia.
Defining culture has proved to be a difficult exercise. Volumes have been produced by anthropologists attempting to pin down the concept of culture. One area of general agreement is that individuals in the same culture tend to share common values. Values are deeply held assumptions about how things should be and about how these ends should be achieved. Values, in turn, lead to a set of specific ideas or personalities in the form of attitudes. Finally, attitudes are the precursors to behavior.
While there is general theoretical agreement concerning the relationships among the variables described, there has been little empirical research on how values, beliefs, and attitudes vary cross-culturally. Beyond G. Hofstede ( 1980) groundbreaking research on values, and other polls on attitudes, few researchers have gone beyond simple two-