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Regular version of the site
Master 2020/2021

Research Seminar "Cross-Cultural Communication in Asia"

Type: Compulsory course (Business and Politics in Modern Asia)
Area of studies: Asian and African Studies
When: 1 year, 4 module
Mode of studies: offline
Open to: students of one campus
Instructors: Valentina Morozova, Ksenia Andreevna Prokofieva
Master’s programme: Business and Politics in Modern Asia
Language: English
ECTS credits: 2

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 development of Asia. 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 examples, supported by a comprehensive reading list. The course will focus on: differences between “interaction” and “communication”, “intercultural”, “multicultural” and “cross-cultural”; basic categories of Asian traditional cultures and their modern interpretations; stereotyping in the process of Intercultural Communication in Asia; national character and main features of Asian business etiquette; intercultural communication and dialogue of cultures in the sociocultural space of modern Asia.
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 develop independently new methods of research.
  • Able to improve and develop intellectual and cultural level, build a trajectory of professional development and career.
  • Able to analyze, verify, evaluate the completeness of information in the process of professional activity.
  • Able to organize multilateral communication and manage it.
  • Able to conduct professional activities (including research activity).
  • 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.
  • Able to choose consciously interpersonal interaction strategies with representatives of countries and cultural bearers of Asia and Africa.
  • Able to build professional activities, business and make choices, guided by the principles of social responsibility.
  • 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 conduct written and oral communication in Russian and foreign languages as a part of the professional and scientific communication.
  • 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 determine independently the problem field of research activities in various aspects of Asian and African research.
  • 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 formulate and justify proposals for joint oriental activity (research, applied research and research-analytical).
  • 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 conduct business negotiations in foreign languages (one oriental and English).
  • 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.
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • 1 year. Lecture 1. The problem of subject definition in cross-cultural communication. Basic categories of Chinese traditional culture and their modern interpretations in the context of cross-cultural communication.
    1.1. Concept of culture and difference between “communication” and “interaction”. Cross-cultural communication as a field of study. 1.2. Main theories of cross-cultural communication (strength and weaknesses). 1.3. China’s traditional values and modern foreign policy. China as a “powerful cultural state”. Seminar 1 1. Why do cultures affect the way we communicate? Culture shock. 2. Cross-cultural vs intercultural. 3. Modern transformation of Chinese traditional culture: building of Chinese contemporary culture.
  • Lecture 2. Chinese business etiquette and business world (关系 – “guanxi” system) – socio-cultural norms and rules.
    2.1. "Fundamentals" of business communication in China – “concept of face and “guanxi” -interpersonal relations system. 2.2. Understanding Chinese business etiquette. 2.3. Current research on Chinese business. Seminar 2 1. The most misunderstood business concept in China. 2. Contracts/governing authorities in Western business culture vs human-hearted Chinese business culture (create case studies on cross-cultural problems). 3. The future of “guanxi” networks in China.
  • Lecture 3. Japanese culture and its’ key concepts.
    3.1. Main historical and religious features of Japan. 3.2. Main concepts of Japanese culture, their meanings and origin. 3.3. Importance of the concepts in Japanese everyday life. Seminar 3 1. Japanese art as a way to understand Japanese national character. 2. Concepts uti/soto in Japanese culture and Japanese language. 3. Attitude to work in Japanese culture and key principles of Japanese culture that affect such an attitude.
  • Lecture 4. Japanese communication culture.
    4.1. Social roles and behavioral patterns in Japanese society. 4.2. Peculiarities of non-verbal communication in Japan. 4.3. Peculiarities of verbal communication in Japan. Seminar 4 1. Japanese person social life. Ways of behavior, communication and self representation in public. 2. Attitude of Japanese person to Japanese public institutions and to public service. 3. What does it mean to be a client in Japan?
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Presentation (China)
  • 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 final exam will take the form of written exam that includes 20 questions in a form of a test (2 open questions).
  • non-blocking Presentation (Japan)
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (4 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

  • Evrard, A. Y., & Appadurai, A. (2017). Modernity at Large : Cultural Dimensions of Globalisation. London: Macat Library. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1564340

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • 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
  • Sergey Mikhnevich. (2016). The Glory of Intelligence: China’s Smart Power and the Implications for Security in the Asia-Pacific Region. https://doi.org/10.17323/1996-7845/2016-01-92