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CASE STUDY: Regional Cultural Differences Within and Across Four Western European Countries

Nadine Waehning, Ibrahim Sirkeci, Stephan Dahl, Sinan Zeyneloglu

Abstract

This case study examines and illustrates within country regional cultural differences and cross border cultural similarities across four western European countries. Drawing on the data from the World Values Survey (WVS), we refer to the Schwartz Cultural Values Inventory in the survey. The demographic variables of age, gender, education level, marital status and income vary across the regions and hence, have significant effects on the cultural value dimensions across regions. The findings help a better understanding of the homogeneity and heterogeneity of regions withinand across countries. Both researchers and managers will have to justify their sampling methods and generalisations more carefully when drawing conclusions for a whole country. This case study underlines the limited knowledge about regional within country cultural differences, while also illustrating the simplification of treating each country as culturally homogeneous. Cross-country business strategies connecting transnational regional markets based on cultural value characteristics need to take these similarities and differences into account when designating business plans.

Keywords

Homogeneity versus heterogeneity; Europe; regional cultural differences; World Values Survey; Schwartz Cultural Values Inventory

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