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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Asian Indian perspectives: Cultural competencies needed to work effectively with Americans on intercultural project teams
by Levacy, William, Ph.D., Capella University, 2012, 201; 3546677
Abstract (Summary)

The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore acculturated Asian Indian descriptions of the phenomena of working interculturally with Americans in the United States. The literature on interculturalism with an emphasis on India and the United States has been limited, thus calling for further study in this area. Because of the significant cultural gap between India and the United States, newly arrived Asian Indians and U.S. workers, management, and consultants encounter cross-cultural adjustment difficulties within U.S. organizations. As globalism expands, India and the United States are collaborating more and more in business ventures, demanding even more intercultural competence. There is a compelling need for research to explore advice from acculturated Asian Indians as to how performance in an intercultural setting can be improved. To achieve this goal of increased cross-cultural competence between Asian Indians and Americans, a phenomenological data analysis process was conducted using a modified Moustakas research design. Data collection and analysis generated 10 major findings that were called mega-themes: (a) Indians have trouble saying no, (b) Americans are not culturally competent, (c) Indians need to be more straightforward, (d) Indians need to socialize more with Americans, (e) Top unfavorable U.S. work behavior (impatience), (f) Need to build intercultural teams, (g) Indian inattention to time, (h) Top favorable U.S. work behaviors (open-mindedness), (i) Need for more intercultural communication, and (j) Dealing with Indian sensitivity. The responses of the study participants seemed to indicate that increased understanding about intercultural issues is a significant requirement to improve and maintain effective intercultural business performance. The 42 study participants confirmed that understanding and embracing cultural differences directly translate into economic well-being, if not survival, in a global economy. Thus, the most important thing about this study is the increased knowledge and attitudes revealed by the themes that emerged from the study participants' responses. The deeper realization of these findings could lead to development of organizational cross-cultural training courses, the addition of a cultural impact analysis component in the human performance improvement process model, and an overall increase in cultural competence within the organizational settings of Asian Indians and Americans.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Johansen, Keith
Commitee: Bartelme, Lois, Pandya, Shardul
School: Capella University
Department: School of Education
School Location: United States -- Minnesota
Source: DAI-A 74/04(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Multicultural Education
Keywords: Asian Indian, Cross-cultural, Globalism, India-United States, Intercultural, Phenomenology, Project teams
Publication Number: 3546677
ISBN: 978-1-267-80563-8
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