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Power inequality in cross-cultural learning : the case of Japanese transplants in China
Asia Pacific Business Review
  • Fok Loi, Jacky HONG, University of Macau
  • Robin Stanley SNELL, Lingnan University, Hong Kong
Document Type
Journal article
Publication Date
  • China,
  • Cross-cultural management,
  • Japan,
  • Organizational learning,
  • Power,
  • Social construction perspective

This article considers power inequality in the context of cross-cultural organizational learning. A qualitative study of five Japanese subsidiaries operating in the People's Republic of China revealed that the Japanese had invested considerable effort into replicating and reinforcing the corporate values, norms, policies and collective learning practices from their home country. Through control of organizational resources and through all-embracing culture transformation programmes, they had leveraged their dominant power to standardize the social construction of collective learning processes and impose these upon the local Chinese. It is noted that these programmes raise the spectre of de-culturalization, namely, removal of Chinese identity and cloning of Japanese identity, and pass opportunities to implement alternative programmes based on libertarian education philosophies that could drive a bilaterally negotiated approach to cross-cultural integration.

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Copyright © 2008 Taylor & Francis

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Citation Information
Hong, J. F. L., & Snell, R. S. (2008). Power inequality in cross-cultural learning: The case of Japanese transplants in China. Asia Pacific Business Review, 14(2), 253-273. doi: 10.1080/13602380701314750