XV. Confucian work dynamism


(STRONGLY ADAPTED FORM HOFSTEDE)
Asian cultures replace the dimension uncertainty avoidance by confucian dynamism. Confucianism refers back to the teaching of Confucius an Chinese teacher who lived at about 500 before Christ and was later added by Hofstede to his work about cultural differences. When he did research in Asian countries he discovered that his results are co-related with the theories of Confucius – Michael Bond called it confucian dynamism. Confucianism is not a religion it is a collection of pragmatic rules of daily life.

„In practical terms confucianism refers to a long-term versus a short-term orientation in life“ (Hofstede, page 164).


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„The dimension confucian dynamism exists of different values taken from a long-term orientation and a short-term orientation“ (Hofstede page 165).

It indicates the extend to which a society is more future /long-term orientated or more past or short-term orientated.

China and other Asian countries have an extraordinary long-term orientation. Values are: persistence which describes the internationality to pursuit certain goals which is an essential for entrepreneurs; ordering relationships by status and observing this order reflects the deep sense for harmony and stable relationships which makes it easier to do business; thrift is related to the availability of financial resources and saving money; having a sense of shame supports the view point to care for others and being loyal and emphasizing trustworthiness.


Finland, France, Germany and USA have a rather low degree of long-term orientation. In contrast short-term orientation values are personal steadiness and stability are required of business people in fast moving markets; protecting one’s face can hinder the flow in business if it is done excessively as well as a too much respect for tradition which prevents from being innovative; reciprocation of greetings, favors, and gifts is more related to social rituals and can lead to an increase in consumption favorable in Western countries with a high degree of short-term orientation. *14
*14 soumunix.uafsom.edu/~global/francesco/francesco.html

5 thoughts on “XV. Confucian work dynamism

  • Juli 24, 2011 um 6:38 pm
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    Interesting articule – the long term orientation of Asian is the key to their success

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  • April 25, 2012 um 2:28 am
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    Also confucius countries operates with bureaucratic and egoistical attitude on other people. (status) E.g. Some Asian countries. However countries such as Australia, Italy operate with an equal perspective on people. That’s true…..

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  • Juli 29, 2012 um 3:15 am
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    Michael Bond actually asked Chinese scholars to come up with dimensions in as shown in the 1985 chinese value survey. Hofstede only did four dimensions himself and then Misho Minkov did a world values survey LTO substitute so that more than the original 22 countries could be used. In the Hofstedes and Minkov’s 2010 work a six th dimension Monumentalism and flex-humility was added.

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  • Juli 29, 2012 um 10:50 am
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    I should also point out that the Philippines and Pakistan have very short term orientations according to hofstede, but since points are added to try to bring countries within the 0-100 range they are not ratio scales. These countries are Asian.

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  • Juli 29, 2012 um 10:53 am
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    Reciprocation of gifts is a big part of Chinese culture. The questions in the survey are about how things should be and not as they are. If the Chinese were asked about how things were they might answer very differently. Hofstede is very clear about separating should be perceptions from is perceptions.

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