Group Intercultural Competence: Adjusting and Validating Its Concept and Development Process

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Janete Schmidmeier orcid
Adriana Roseli Wunsch Takahashi orcid
Janaina Maria Bueno orcid


Intercultural competence is a topic that has been increasingly focused on academic researches, mainly related to the context of multinational companies and multicultural teams. The literature on intercultural competence is broad, permeated with many concepts and models of its development, but the main focus is on individual (cognitive/behavioral approach). There are few studies on the group level whose approach emphasize the process. The objective of this study was to empirically test the concept of group intercultural competence (GIC) and analyze its development in multicultural teams, as indicated by Leung, Ang and Tan (2014). This research can be characterized as qualitative, of exploratory-descriptive type, with an interpretive approach that embraces sequential intramethod triangulation, with interpretative and content analysis. As the results, the process of GIC development was found to occur towards more mature levels of GIC and to be characterized by an upward spiral pyramidal process, where the lowest level evolves to higher levels of GIC through a cycle of inter-cultural learning. This development occurs over time and is permeated by conflict, reflection and change, covering the elements of GIC: interaction, efficacy, cultural differences, intercultural learning and communication, such as cause and consequence. Based on the theoretical and empirical contributions, it was possible to adjust and validate a proposed GIC concept, to adjust the relevant elements and dimensions for GIC analysis, and to understand how the GIC is developed through a procedural perspective where there is an intercultural learning cycle permeated by conflicts, reflections, interaction and changes.


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Schmidmeier, J., Takahashi, A. R. W., & Bueno, J. M. (2019). Group Intercultural Competence: Adjusting and Validating Its Concept and Development Process. Journal of Contemporary Administration, 24(2), 151-166.