Workshop Series: Andre Pekerti
The influence of culture on organizations through trade, immigration, and exchange of information and ideas has occurred for centuries. However, it is only in recent decades that the degree and intensity cultural influence have spiked as a result of globalization. This has produced multicultural work environments where large percentages of a nation's workforce come from a large variety of cultural backgrounds. As a result there has been an increased interest in understanding the effects of multiculturalism in organizational contexts. This theoretical presentation revolves around the question, "Do functional individuals who sustains multiple cultures exist? If so, how do we know and how do they function in work environments?" It will briefly review the extant literature on biculturalism and multiculturalism, and then propose a more nuanced theory of the multicultural experience coined N-Culturalism. N-culturals are functional individuals who successfully operate by maintaining multiple cultural identities and frameworks, and reflect these frameworks behaviourally. The presentation introduces a number of contributions to the literature on individuals who live at the juncture of two or more cultures. First, by challenging previous operationalizations of bicultural individuals, the concept of N-Culturalism extends and re-conceptualizes the empirical criteria of the bicultural and multi-cultural individuals. It introduces an individual-level metacognitive working model beyond the extant bidimensional perspective of acculturation. It is proposed that N-culturals are able to maintain salience of multiple cultures at varying strengths thus function with multiple frameworks rather than switching frameworks. The presentation plays with the notion that N-Cultural metacognition has high functional utility by illustrating how an individual can manage the multiple cultures simultaneously. The implications of the proposed working model are discussed with regard to organizational behaviours in multicultural settings.
André A. Pekerti is a Senior Lecturer in the Strategy Cluster, University of Queensland Business School. He is Indonesian-Chinese, born in Jakarta and grew up in Southern California. As a naturalized New Zealander, Andre currently lives and works in Brisbane. André's multicultural background complements his research interest in international management and international organizational behavior. His primary research topics are communication, cultural intelligence, family business careers and networks, multicultural individuals, organizational attribution, servant leadership and values. André consistently presents in a number of international conferences and has published in international journals including, Career Development Quarterly, International Journal of Conflict Management, International Journal of Cross-Cultural Management, International Journal of Human Resource Management, Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, Thunderbird International Business Review. André Pekerti is a member of Emotions in Business.