THE GLOBE BOOK OF IN-DEPTH STUDIES OF 25 SOCIETIES. – The Journal of Applied Christian Leadership (2023)

In 1980, Geert Hofstede, in an article challenging the assumption that American management theories apply in cross-cultural settings, noted that the “first U.S. book about the cultural relativity of U.S. management theories is still to be written.” His landmark study on cultural differences in management practices (G. H. Hofstede, 1980) had just been published. But most American managers and leaders continued to proceed on the parochial assumption that the wisdom of American management literature represented the one best approach that could be offered to leaders worldwide. Over the years this notion has been thoroughly challenged by cross-cultural researchers. The work of Hofstede led to further investigations of cultural management practices and values. What many of these studies had in common was the notion that there were culture dimensions that could be compared from culture to culture (Adler, 2002; Lewis, 1996; Schwartz, 1999; Trompenaars, 1998). The most ambitious of all cross-cultural leadership studies, however, is the so-called GLOBE study, a collaborative research endeavor that according to the Hong Kong scholar Kwok Leung may very well “go down in the history of management research as a hallmark for diversity, inclusiveness, richness, and multilateralism” (xvi). Culture and Leadership, Across the World is the second volume of the GLOBE (Global Leadership and Organizational Behavior Effectiveness) research project. This volume presents the results of GLOBE’s Phase 3, which consisted of an in-depth description of culture and leadership in 25 of the 62 countries studied by the GLOBE project. The results of Phase 1 (the development and validation of the research methods) and Phase 2 (the description of culture and leadership factors in 62 countries) were reported in the 818-page book Culture, Leadership, and Organizations (House, Hanges, Javidan, Dorfman, & Gupta, 2004), which was reviewed by Thom Wolf in the first issue of this journal (2006).

The present volume contains 28 chapters, written by 57 authors, in 1162 (xxxi) pages, including 61 pages of index. The first two chapters are introductory, followed by 25 country chapters, and a concluding chapter integrating the rich findings of the volumes that readers will find particularly enlightening. In chapter 1, which serves as a general introduction to the GLOBE project, its purpose, structure, history, and methodology, the authors defend the need of a country-specific (emic) approach to leadership and culture and define the main constructs of culture, organizational practices, and leadership.

The GLOBE project approaches culture in terms of nine quantitative dimensions: (1) Assertiveness, (2) Future Orientation, (3) Gender Egalitarianism, (4) Humane Orientation, (5) Institutional Collectivism, (6) In-Group Collectivism, (7) Performance Orientation, (8) Power Distance, and (9) Uncertainty Avoidance. One contribution of the GLOBE project has been to measure culture variables not only on the practice and manifestation (“as is”) level, but also on the level of values, beliefs, and implicit theories (“should be,” cf. McClelland, 1985). Furthermore, GLOBE distinguishes two units of analysis: organizations and societies. The operational definition of leadership in the GLOBE study is “the ability of an individual to influence, motivate, and enable others to contribute toward the effectiveness and success of the organizations of which they are members” (p. 6). Thus GLOBE focuses on organizational leadership, not leadership in general.

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In chapter 2 the authors first discuss the methodology of the GLOBE project as a whole, and then describe the specific methodology of the country chapters integrating both quantitative and qualitative methods, such as focus groups, ethnographic interviews, media analysis, as well as unobtrusive measures and participant observation data from the country co-investigators (CCIs). As a result the country chapters not only contain information that allowed the researchers to compare and rank the countries on the culture dimension level, but also develop rich country-specific (emic) descriptions of how leadership typically manifests itself in a country. These in-depth leadership portraits make this book an enormously useful volume for leaders of international organizations or multicultural institutions because they give insights not found at the level of the country general (etic) leadership dimensions.

The 25 country chapters are arranged in 10 clusters of countries based on unique patterns of societal and organizational characteristics. They are listed in Table 1. Each chapter follows a common format, moving from general facts about the country (demographics, economy, government, etc.) to a brief historical sketch and finally a more extensive picture of any cultural features that allows the readers to catch a glimpse of the unique character of leadership in this context. Thus we learn (not surprisingly) that Switzerland employs about twice as many people in the banking sector as Italy, France, and Great Britain, and that it derives about half of its foreign trade from the banks. Some readers may find it interesting to analyze the placement of certain “boundary-spanning” countries which seem to defy easy classification. The Netherlands, for instance, are found in the Germanic section even though it shares certain characteristics also with the Nordic and Anglo clusters. If you look for Turkey, go to the Middle East cluster, while Israel is found in the Latin European cluster.

Each chapter then reports the results of the nine GLOBE culture dimensions, providing many examples helpful for a better understanding of the scores, such as for instance the representation of women in organizations and society. One example of a culture dimension reported is Future Orientation. What I found remarkable was that Switzerland ranked second in the “As Is” score for this dimension with a Mean score of 4.73, which is remarkably close to its “Should Be” value of 4.79, a score that makes its comparative rank drop to 59 out of 61. Evidently there are many countries aspiring to be forward-looking in their leadership practices, but Switzerland actually seems to achieve it. The authors note that religious roots, particularly the Calvinist influence in part of the population, which gets translated into a strong work ethic, and the legendary Swiss thriftiness may be one explanation for this near convergence of Swiss aspirations and reality in Future Orientation.

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Table 1: GLOBE Society/Culture Clusters

THE GLOBE BOOK OF IN-DEPTH STUDIES OF 25 SOCIETIES. – The Journal of Applied Christian Leadership (1)

Is it really possible to describe what can be considered manifestations of a typical Indian manager “(a) common to the entire country without exception and (b) unique to the country insofar as these are not found in other societies” (p. 991)? The authors are cautious in their optimism that this can be done in useful ways. Thus I found it refreshing to discover a certain tentativeness with which authors approached their task of describing culture-specific factors. Yet their familiarity with the culture seemed to allow them to highlight aspects that can help cross-cultural managers and researchers approach each country with greater depth. Thus, each chapter is a goldmine of interesting details about how leaders approach their task, some of them pointing to the need for understanding specific worldview issues and possibly careful preparation for cross-cultural projects. One worldview issue that shows up in several countries is the prevalence of spirit and luck factors. In the chapter on India, you will notice the authors’ stress on the role of astrology in determining appropriate dates and times to under- take some important activities. Most Western leaders shaped by hundreds of years of Enlightenment worldview and secularized Christian notions will find themselves rather uncomfortable in such settings. Another aspect I found rather fascinating is the fact that some of the Nordic countries and Switzerland are rather suspicious of the very notion of leadership.

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This discussion of the culture variables is usually followed by a description of the implicit leadership model present in the country among middle managers by listing the scores on 21 leadership variables that can be grouped into 6 (second-order) leadership dimensions: (1) Autonomous, (2) Charismatic, (3) Humane, (4) Participative, (5) Self- protective, and (6) Team oriented leadership. While the listed scores allow for a certain comparison with other countries, it is the additional information derived from multiple qualitative sources that allow a rich tapestry of cultural threads to emerge. Often chapters also include biographical highlights of examples of leaders considered especially significant by a country (e.g. Gandhi in India), and appendices with supporting material.

The authors seem to have had quite a bit of freedom to construct their chapters. This freedom seems to be responsible for the variability in the usual chapter length of 30-45 pages (Singapore, 22 pages; USA, 70 pages) and a certain inconsistency in the way some statistical scores are reported that occasionally makes comparison between countries unnecessarily awkward. While striking this critical note, I also found a few figures whose format had gone astray (e.g.: Figure 1.1 repeated much cleaner in Figure 2.1, and Figure 1.2). Table 1.2, which reports the GLOBE Society/Culture Clusters, indicates the countries with chapters in this volume with a star but fails to mark Greece, Russia, India and Switzerland, which are actually represented in the book. This is correct, however, in Table 28.1. Appendix A3 is titled wrongly as Power Distance while the chart is In-Group Collectivism. Some of the country markers in Appendix B charts in my book were unfortunately illegible. Given the sheer massiveness and the complexity of the volume, these are minor problems. I suspect that these problems have been corrected by now in later printings.

A more serious question is raised by the way the 25 countries were selected based on those authors accepting the invitation to participate in Phase 3 rather than on an attempt to represent the different regions of the world more inclusively. This pragmatic approach to research reporting has led to the exclusion of Black Africa (South Africa is based on a white sample and included in the Anglo cluster), the Arab World (Turkey is the only Middle-East cluster representative) and the under- representation of Southern Asia (1 out of 6), Latin America (3 out of 10), and Eastern Europe (2 out of 8), and the overrepresentation of Anglo and other European countries (15 of 21). May I suggest that the richness of this volume is a strong argument for the need of a further volume reporting the remaining 37 countries?

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The last chapter of the book is a brilliant tour de force that attempts a synthesis of the results of Phases 2 and 3. This chapter is full of insights for students of cross-cultural leadership. Particularly interesting is the discussion on cluster-typical and boundary-spanning societies and different “species” of leadership. Some societies, like Argentina or Colombia, exhibit characteristics that are quite representative of their clusters. Others like the Netherlands are related to several clusters: located in the Germanic cluster, its societal characteristics overlap with the Nordic cluster (in Power Distance, In-Group Collectivism, Institutional Collectivism, and Gender Egalitarianism) and some with the Anglo cluster (in Uncertainty Avoidance). Boundary- spanning societies may facilitate access to cultural information and skills for organizations wishing to expand into other culture clusters.

One contribution of the GLOBE study is the ability to distinguish subtle differences in culture or leadership dimensions that are often not noticeable by quantitative studies alone. While countries may show similar numbers in a leadership dimension, these differences detected by qualitative data are so real that the authors even speak of different “species” of leadership. For instance, Humane Oriented leadership can mean (a) “a set of values and behaviors that espouse equanimity, egali- tarianism, and not flaunting one’s own status as a leader” (in several Anglo-cluster countries); (b) “friendly, open and generous interpersonal conduct” which in times of crisis is expected to be “direct and clear” (in New Zealand), “compassionate” (in the USA) or “aggressive” (in Australia); (c) “a Confucian principle of moderation and maintaining harmonious social relationships” (in China); or (d) “a traditional principle of humanity reposing faith and confidence in followers, giving them freedom, and taking personal care of their well-being” (in India) (pp. 1043-44). These are just a few examples to show the rich insights that the GLOBE study has produced and may be waiting to share with the world of leadership.

What does this volume do for leaders of international Christian organizations? For one thing, it helps Christian leaders understand that there are infinite variations of leadership that have arisen out of the complex interplay of history, religion, politics, and economics. Since this volume arose out of research in business organizations, the authors deal with worldview and religion issues only in a marginal way. Yet, it is precisely in this volume that includes qualitative research methods that these issues surface most clearly. It is curious that despite centuries of working in cultures around the globe, no Christian organization or denomination has ever attempted a similar research study, even though some Christian organizations or denominations with global presence could make an important contribution to the further unpacking of the many issues and questions yet left untouched by the GLOBE research study. For instance, in my international work with Christian organizations, I note that the local culture often influences the way leadership is practiced in a given country. American churches priding themselves in following Biblical models are often headed by a “president” and run by “committees” following parliamentary-like procedures.

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  1. Adler, N. J. (2002). International dimensions of organizational behavior (4th ed.). Cincinati, OH: South-Western.
  2. Hofstede, G. (1980). Motivation, leadership, and organization: Do American theories apply abroad? [doi: DOI: 10.1016/0090-2616(80)90013-3]. Organizational Dynamics, 9(1), 42-63.
  3. Hofstede, G. H. (1980). Culture’s consequences: International differences in work-related values. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.
  4. House, R. J., Hanges, P. J., Javidan, M., Dorfman, P. W., & Gupta, V. (2004). Culture, leadership, and organizations: The GLOBE study of 62 societies. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
  5. Lewis, R. D. (1996). When cultures collide: Managing successfully across cultures. London: N. Brealey.
  6. McClelland, D. C. (1985). Human motivation. Glenview, IL: Scott, Foresman. Schwartz, S. H. (1999). A theory of cultural values and some implications for work. Applied Psychology: An International Review, 48(1), 23-47.
  7. Trompenaars, A. (1998). Riding the waves of culture: understanding diversity in global business. New York: McGraw-Hill.
  8. Wolf, T. (2006). Culture, leadership, and organizations: The GLOBE study of 62 societies. [Book Review]. Journal of Applied Christian Leadership, 1(1), 55-71.

Erich Baumgartner, JACL Senior Editor, is Professor of Leadership and Intercultural Communication at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan.


What are the 9 dimensions of the GLOBE project? ›

The GLOBE project approaches culture in terms of nine quantitative dimensions: (1) Assertiveness, (2) Future Orientation, (3) Gender Egalitarianism, (4) Humane Orientation, (5) Institutional Collectivism, (6) In-Group Collectivism, (7) Performance Orientation, (8) Power Distance, and (9) Uncertainty Avoidance.

What is the GLOBE framework? ›

A second important cultural framework, the Global Leadership and Organizational Behavior Effectiveness (GLOBE) project provides managers with an additional lens through which they can better understand how to perform well in an international environment.

What is the difference between GLOBE Framework and Hofstede? ›

Hofstede's cultural dimension focuses on increasing cross-cultural communication in various cultural dimensions. The GLOBE framework focuses on enhancing collectivism and individualism in the various cultural dimensions.

What are the nine cultural dimensions? ›

These studies identified nine dimensions that describe differences in national cultures. These dimensions are power distance, uncertainty avoidance, performance orientation, assertiveness, future orientation, humane orientation, institutional collectivism, in-group collectivism, and gender egalitarianism.

What are the GLOBE 6 leadership styles? ›

The GLOBE study provides scores on six CLT dimensions—charismatic/value-based/performance-based, team-oriented, humane-oriented, participative, autonomous, and self-protective.

What is 9th dimension theory? ›

In the ninth dimension, we can compare all the possible universe histories, starting with all the different possible laws of physics and initial conditions. In the tenth and final dimension, we arrive at the point in which everything possible and imaginable is covered.

What are the 3 main parts of the globe? ›

And remember that the lithosphere is composed of the earth's crust and the uppermost part of the mantle. The 3 main layers are the core, mantle and crust.

What are the main findings of the Globe project? ›

The GLOBE project identified the following nine dimensions of culture.
  • Performance Orientation. ...
  • Uncertainty Avoidance. ...
  • Assertiveness. ...
  • Power Distance.
  • Gender Egalitarianism. ...
  • Institutional Collectivism. ...
  • Humane Orientation. ...
  • Future Orientation.
Apr 8, 2022

What are the 3 parts of the globe? ›

Equator, Hemispheres, Axis, and Directions

The earth is divided into hemispheres by the equator. The earth rotates daily about its axis. The north and south poles are the two imaginary points where the axis would enter and exit from the earth if the axis were a pole or a line (see Fig. 1.9).

What are the disadvantages of the Globe study? ›

Criticisms of the GLOBE research:

Although the GLOBE study is diverse and quantitative in nature, it does not provide offer information on the relationship between culture and leadership or how culture may or may not influence the leadership process.

Is Hofstede model accurate? ›

In group culture, individuals might answer questions as if they are addressed to the group he belongs to. Contrary to the USA which has individualistic culture answers may be different. Hence Hofstede does not provide an accurate analysis of cultural differences.

What are the 4 main Hofstede dimensions to describe culture explain briefly? ›

The original theory proposed four dimensions along which cultural values could be analyzed: individualism-collectivism; uncertainty avoidance; power distance (strength of social hierarchy) and masculinity-femininity (task-orientation versus person-orientation).

What are the 7 theories on culture? ›

Seven theoretical perspectives are reviewed: individualism-collectivism; ecological systems; cultural-ecological; social identity; ecocultural and sociocultural; structure-agency; and multiple worlds.

What are the 5 elements of culture? ›

The major elements of culture are symbols, language, norms, values, and artifacts. Language makes effective social interaction possible and influences how people conceive of concepts and objects.

What is the 7 aspect of culture? ›


What are the three classic of leader style? ›

And each successful leader develops a style based on their own personality, goals, and business culture based on one of these three leadership styles: autocratic, democratic, and laissez-faire. Take a moment and consider your own leadership approach.

What are the four eyes of leadership? ›

There are four factors to transformational leadership, (also known as the "four I's"): idealized influence, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation, and individual consideration.

What is the 11th dimension? ›

What is 11th dimension? The 11th dimension is a characteristic of space-time that has been proposed as a possible answer to questions that arise in superstring theory. The theory of superstrings involves the existence of nine dimensions of space and one dimension of time for a total of 10 dimensions.

What is a 10th dimensional being? ›

A user of 10th Dimension Physiology would be Brahman himself, a single, timeless, infinite entity that encompasses everything and anything instead of being one with everything and anything.

What is 8th dimension? ›

The Eighth Dimension is a theoretical physical plane where each particle has different beginnings but branches out infinitely.

What are the 7 parts of the globe? ›

Parts of a Globe
  • Equator.
  • Prime meridian.
  • Latitude.
  • Longitude.
  • Northern Hemisphere.
  • Southern hemisphere.
  • Western Hemisphere.
  • Eastern hemisphere. Get Started.

What are four characteristics of a globe? ›

Answer : It is mounted on an axis, on which it can rotate freely. The oceans and continents are represented over the surface of the globe with different colors. The horizontal and vertical lines are drawn over the globe, in order to find the exact location of a place.

What are the 2 ends of the globe? ›

The two ends of the axis of the Earth are called Poles.

These endpoints are called the North Pole and the South Pole.

What is the GLOBE model of leadership? ›

The GLOBE Project (Global Leadership and Organizational Behavior Effectiveness Project) is a study of global leadership and organizational behavior effectiveness that spans over 60 countries and cultures. Researchers categorized six leadership styles: Performance-oriented style, or innovative and visionary.

What are the benefits of GLOBE study? ›

GLOBE studies provide a classification of cultural dimensions that is more expansive than the commonly used Hofstede classification system. GLOBE studies provide useful information about what is universally accepted as good and bad leadership.

Why is GLOBE so important? ›

A globe is very useful model to display the actual shape of the earth with its tilted axis ; The rotation and revolution of the earth can be very clearly shown by it along with the continents and oceans.

What are the 4 quadrants of the globe? ›

There are generally considered to be four hemispheres: northern, southern, eastern, and western.

What is the major part of the globe? ›

The top section is called the Northern Hemisphere and the bottom is called the Southern Hemisphere. The imaginary line running horizontally across the middle of the globe is called the Equator.

What are the two common type of globe? ›

When it comes to globes, there are two main types: terrestrial and celestial. Terrestrial globes depict the Earth's surface, while celestial globes show the night sky.

What is one limitation of a globe? ›

Limitations of The Globe:

A globe does not give an accurate idea of the distance between two places. A globe is too small to depict the actual size of an area. It is not easy to carry from one place to another.

What are 5 disadvantages of a globe? ›

Disadvantages –
  • Difficult to hold on hands or carry.
  • Does not help to study the specific part of the Earth.
  • It does not show towns, cities, district, roads, railways etc.

What are the main problem with the globe? ›

United Nations list
Top-level issueIssues
Environmentpollution, deforestation, desertification, etc., see Global environment issues below
Familysocialisation of children, cf. Ageing, Children
Foodmissing food security and safety, food riots, world hunger
26 more rows

Why is Hofstede criticized? ›

Research work of Hofstede was based on the data from one company. The criticism is that findings didn't provide valid information regarding culture of entire country (Graves, 1986; Olie, 1995). The finding of one company can't be implemented on overall culture to determine cultural dimensions.

What are the 6 cultural dimensions? ›

Hofstede's 6 cultural dimensions are: power distance index (high versus low), individualism versus collectivism, masculinity versus femininity, uncertainty avoidance index (high versus low), long versus short-term orientation and indulgence versus restraint (Mindtools, 2018).

What is masculinity in Hofstede? ›

Hoftstede's definitions: “Masculinity stands for a society in which social gender roles are clearly distinct: Men are supposed to be assertive, tough, and focused on material success; women are supposed to be more modest, tender, and concerned with the quality of life.”

What countries are feminine culture? ›

Countries that are considered feminine cultures are Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands, and Costa Rica. According to Hofstede, "Femininity stands for a society in which social gender roles overlap: Both men and women are supposed to be modest, tender, and concerned with the quality of life."

What is an example of indulgence culture? ›

Indulgence in National Cultures

People behave and act in ways which lead them to gratification. Countries with moderate level of indulgence include Iran, Finland, Sweden, Turkey, and Algeria. In these countries indulgence and attention to duty is considered equally important.

What are the 10 cultural values? ›

This feedback report includes information on ten cultural value dimensions.
  • Individualism.
  • Collectivism.
  • Low Power Distance.
  • High Power Distance.
  • Low Uncertainty Avoidance.
  • High Uncertainty Avoidance Emphasis on planning and predictability.
  • Cooperative.
  • Competitive.

What are the 4 concepts of culture? ›

The major elements of culture are symbols, language, norms, values, and artifacts.

What are the 6 cultural concepts? ›

This article describes briefly the Hofstede model of six dimensions of national cultures: Power Distance, Uncertainty Avoidance, Individualism/Collectivism, Masculinity/Femininity, Long/Short Term Orientation, and Indulgence/Restraint.

What are the five 5 theories of society? ›

Definitions of key terms for the five basic sociological perspectives – Functionalism, Marxism, Feminism, Social Action Theory and Postmodernism.

What is the most complex level of culture trait? ›

Sociofacts are the most complex but the shortest-lived cultural traits.

What is the difference between a culture and a society? ›

Different societies have different cultures; however it is important not to confuse the idea of culture with society. A culture represents the beliefs and practices of a group, while society represents the people who share those beliefs and practices. Neither society nor culture could exist without the other.

What are symbols of culture? ›

Cultural symbols can be religious or spiritual, or they can represent the ideology or philosophy of a culture's language, values and traditions. Cultural symbols include signs, emblems, hand gestures, flags, animals and much more.

What are the 10 universals of culture? ›

There are 10 basic elements of every culture: geography, language, family, FCTS (food, clothing, transport, shelter), economics, education, politics, technology, VBR (values, beliefs, rituals), and cultural expression. As mentioned, it's important to learn and respect people of your own or different cultures.

What is the 8 element of culture? ›

The elements of culture. The major elements of culture are material culture, language, aesthetics, education, religion, attitudes and values and social organisation.

What are the 8 cultural dimensions? ›

In this section, we will address eight cultural variables: human nature, time, action, communication, space, power, individualism/collectivism, and competitiveness/cooperativeness.

Are there 9 spatial dimensions? ›

In string theory, spacetime is ten-dimensional (nine spatial dimensions, and one time dimension), while in M-theory it is eleven-dimensional (ten spatial dimensions, and one time dimension).

How many dimensions does the GLOBE project have? ›

It includes the following six primary leadership dimensions: (a) visionary, (b) inspirational, (c) self-sacrifice, (d) integrity, (e) decisive and (f) performance oriented.

What is the 9th spatial dimension? ›

9th Dimension is Time. In physics, time is any mathematical model that fuses the three dimensions of space and the one dimension of time into a single four-dimensional space-time continuum.

Are there only 9 dimensions? ›

The world as we know it has three dimensions of space—length, width and depth—and one dimension of time. But there's the mind-bending possibility that many more dimensions exist out there. According to string theory, one of the leading physics model of the last half century, the universe operates with 10 dimensions.


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