I Am, Therefore I Fail”: An Empirical Study of the Relationship between National Culture and Economic and Financial Crisis

I Am, Therefore I Fail”: An Empirical Study of the Relationship between National Culture and Economic and Financial Crisis

Author(s) by Jorge F.S. Gomes, Joaquim Pinto Coelho
Pages 354-371
Keywords National culture; crisis; values; laxity; bankruptcy; politics
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Abstract


The extent to which national culture and values are associated with economic and financial downturns has been largely unexplored in organisational studies. This reveals an important gap in the literature, which needs to be addressed, especially with regard to the recent global crisis. The goal of this text is to present the results of an empirical study designed to explore the relationships between national culture and economic crisis. The study was conducted in Portugal, which received international economic aid between 2008 and 2014, and it is original for two reasons: a) it shows how national culture is related to the various economic and financial aspects of the crisis; and, b) it studies these relationships over a period of 18 months. The research is based on a survey questionnaire for a global population, filled in by an average of 1,000 people in three key moments in time: November 2012, April 2012, and November 2013. The research was designed to capture individual perceptions regarding the economic and financial aspects of the crisis, as well as the country‟s specific cultural aspects. The results show that some perceptions of cultural aspects suffered a significant rise from moment 1 to moment 2, followed by a decrease from moment 2 to moment 3. The sharp increase of individual perceptions in moment 2 coincides with a vast array of political and fiscal changes, which had histrionic impacts on the everyday life of individuals and families. Although this paper is based on individual perceptions regarding cultural, political, and economic factors, it shows that these macro variables act in conjunction during a crisis, which has important implications for the study of culture and politics. The paper ends with a discussion of such implications.

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