CFP Intercultural Competence & Mobility (Arizona)

Intercultural Competence and Mobility: Virtual and Physical
Sixth International Conference on the Development and Assessment of Intercultural Competence
January 25-28, 2018
Wyndham Grand Westward Look Resort Tucson, Arizona

Click here for Keynote and Plenary abstracts and biographical statements

As the opportunity and need to move between physical and virtual spaces has increased, more people experience the world as mobile and interconnected (see e.g. Douglas Fir Group, 2016; Kramsch & Whiteside, 2008). On the one hand, this has enabled participation in dispersed communities and markets; on the other hand, as communication, meaning making, and culture have become deterritorialized, interculturality has revealed itself as more complex than the ability to mediate across cultural differences. At the same time, patterns of mass migration and economic globalization have meant local contexts are also shaped by transnational flows of capital, knowledge, practices, and modes of communication. As a result people in today’s world must develop the capacity to negotiate and navigate dynamic demands.

In 2018, CERCLL (Center for Educational Resources in Culture, Language, and Literacy, based at the University of Arizona) will host the Sixth International Conference on the Development and Assessment of Intercultural Competence which will focus on Intercultural Competence and Mobility: Virtual and Physical. The conference will feature presentations and workshops that consider intercultural competence in connection with global trends of migration, travel, and digitally-enabled mobility. Of particular interest are contributions that address the changing state of intercultural competence in a mobile world.

CERCLL invites proposals for individual papers, symposia, roundtables, posters, and workshops (half-day/full-day) with preference given to topics related to the conference theme of Intercultural Competence and Mobility: Virtual and Physical.

Proposal deadline: 11:59 pm (Pacific Standard Time) on May 22nd, 2017

Les compétences interculturelles: Enjeux, pratiques, perspectives

Special Issue LPS About a year ago, Johanna Maccioni asked if I would write an article for a special issue of the journal Les Politiques Sociales on Les compétences interculturelles: Enjeux, pratiques, perspectives [Intercultural competences: Stakes, practices and perspectives] which she was editing with Cédric Juliens. I agreed, and wrote the draft, which we discussed when we both happened to be in Paris in April. It was translated over the summer; in fall Yves Winkin helped by reviewing the entire translation with me when we were both in Victoria. The issue has just been published, and is now available. As a Belgian journal published in French, the overview provided below is in French, however abstracts of all of the articles are available in French, English and Spanish. My thanks to Johanna for the invitation which led to a model of intercultural collaboration.

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, Director
Center for Intercultural Dialogue

Présentation [Overview]

Lors de vagues de migrations successives, des millions de personnes ont gagné l’Occident dans la perspective d’une vie meilleure. Migrants et natifs du pays d’accueil ont alors fait l’expérience de la rencontre. Mais quand les différences culturelles sont perçues sur le mode de la hiérarchie, des rapports de force s’installent. Les travailleurs sociaux doivent-ils préconiser l’assimilation ou négocier sur fond d’interculturalité ? Et lors de cette négociation, quelles compétences les acteurs mettent-ils en jeu ? Ce numéro propose un état de la question des compétences interculturelles. Il clarifie certains enjeux identitaires, explore des pratiques actuelles et pose une réflexion pour l’avenir.

Sommaire [Table of Contents]

Présentation [Introduction] by Johanna Maccioni and  Cédric Juliens

De la possession des compétences interculturelles au dialogue interculturel : un cadre conceptuel [Putting intercultural skills and abilities at the service of dialogue: A conceptual framework] by Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz

L’interculturalisme québécois : un modèle alternatif d’intégration [Inter-culturalism in Quebec: An alternative model of integration] by Sabine Choquet

Reconnaissance : entre égalité et diversité [Recognition: Between equality and diversity] by Audrey Heine and Laurent Licata

« Islam-médicament » et « Coran-pharmacie » : du religieux comme forme de soin [“Islam the medicine, the Koran the pharmacist”: Religious practice as a form of care] by Eléonore Meriem Armanet

Enjeux de formation à la démarche interculturelle : exemple du milieu des soins [What is at stake in intercultural approaches: The example of the area of health care] by Johanna Maccioni

Le choc culturel : révélateur des difficultés des travailleurs sociaux intervenant en milieu de migrants et réfugiés [“Culture-shock”: A telling sign of the difficulties of social workers working with migrants and refugees by Margalit Cohen-Emerique

L’évaluation des compétences interculturelles [The evaluation of intercultural competences] by Anne Bartel-Radic

Les mobilités académiques comme opportunité pour les compétences interculturelles : de l’endoctrinement à l’acceptation des imaginaires [What happens when students exchange universities: The chance to be at
home in a different culture and replace received ideas with a new imaginative world] by Fred Dervin

« La première fois que j’ai vu de la neige en Belgique, je croyais que c’était du sucre. » Entretien avec l’équipe de médiatrices interculturelles du « Foyer » [“The first time I saw snow in Belgium I thought it was sugar”: A discussion with the team of female intercultural mediators at the cultural centre, Molenbeek, Brussels] by Juliens Cédric and Chikhi Hamida

« C’est à l’Eden que je songeais » [“C’est à l’Eden que je songeais”] by Frédéric Dussenne

Compétences interculturelles : entre droit à la diversité et nécessité du vivre ensemble [Intercultural competence between the right to diversity and the need to live together] by Altay Manço

Key Concept #3: Intercultural Competence Translated into Persian

Key Concepts in ICDContinuing translations of Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, today I am posting KC3: Intercultural Competence, written by Lily A. Arasaratnam and first published in English in 2014, which Ramin Hajianfard has now translated into Persian.

As always, all Key Concepts are available as free PDFs; just click on the thumbnail to download. Lists of Key Concepts organized chronologically by publication date and number, alphabetically by concept, and by languages into which they have been translated, are available, as is a page of acknowledgments with the names of all authors, translators, and reviewers.

KC3 Intercultural Competence_PersianArasaratnam, L. (2016). Intercultural competence [Persian]. (R. Hajianfard, Trans). Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, 3. Available from:

If you are interested in translating one of the Key Concepts, please contact me for approval first because dozens are currently in process. As always, if there is a concept you think should be written up as one of the Key Concepts, whether in English or any other language, propose it. If you are new to CID, please provide a brief resume. This opportunity is open to masters students and above, on the assumption that some familiarity with academic conventions generally, and discussion of intercultural dialogue specifically, are useful.

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, Director
Center for Intercultural Dialogue

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Key Concept #3: Intercultural Competence Translated into Arabic

Key Concepts in ICDContinuing translations of Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, today I am posting KC3: Intercultural Competence, which Lily Arasaratnam wrote in English in 2014, now translated into Arabic by Fahd Alalwi, of the Prince Sattam Bin Abdulaziz University, in Saudi Arabia.

As always, all Key Concepts are available as free PDFs; just click on the thumbnail of the translation to read it. Lists of Key Concepts organized chronologically by publication date and number, alphabetically by concept, and by languages into which they have been translated, are available, as is a page of acknowledgments with the names of all authors, translators, and reviewers.

KC3 Intercultural Competence_ArabicArasaratnam, L. (2016). Intercultural competence [Arabic]. Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, 3.  (F. Alalwi, Trans.). Available from:

If you are interested in translating one of the Key Concepts, please contact me for approval first because dozens are currently in process. As always, if there is a concept you think should be written up as one of the Key Concepts, whether in English or any other language, propose it. If you are new to CID, please provide a brief resume. This opportunity is open to masters students and above, on the assumption that some familiarity with academic conventions generally, and discussion of intercultural dialogue specifically, are useful.

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, Director
Center for Intercultural Dialogue

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Johanna Maccioni Profile

ProfilesJohanna Maccioni is a a clinical psychologist in Brussels, Belgium. After 5 years study in psychology, she obtained a D.E.S. (Diplôme d’Etude Spécialisé) in adult psychotherapy and passed the “Agregation” (which enables her to teach within universities).

Johanna Maccioni

She worked in hospitals in oncology and other units for ten years (in Belgium and in Martinique-France). For four years at Brugmann Hospital, she coordinated a project funded by the Belgian National Cancer Plan to improve migrants’ hospital care. In 2010, this project won the Gert Noel prize from the Belgian King Baudouin Foundation (the foundation supports justice, democracy and diversity in society), and this project inspired other units in other hospitals. After that, Maccioni began teaching Social Psychology, Intercultural Psychology, Group Dynamics and Clinical Systemic Therapy at the Haute Ecole Leonard de Vinci, a school specializing in paramedical training. As of September 2015, she is teaching a course on “Interculturalism in Health” (this is the second course on the subject offered in Belgium, after “Health and Culture” given by Dr. Louis Ferrand in Anvers University for doctors). She also trains doctors and paramedics who are currently working on this subject. In addition, she participates in a group project on how to improve migrants’ hospital care, organized by the Interfederal Center for Equal Opportunities (UNI-A: Centre Interfédéral pour l’Egalité des Chances, a public institution fighting discrimination).

Publications include:

Maccioni, J. (2019). Le-La patient.e étranger.ère et sa famille face au cancer: Un projet d’accompagnement multiculturel. In A. Heine & L. Licata (Eds.), La psychologie interculturelle en pratiques (pp. 189-200). Bruxelles : Mardaga.

Maccioni, J. & Heine, A. (2019). Dispositif de formation des soignant.e.s aux compétences interculturelles. In A. Heine & L. Licata (Eds.), La psychologie interculturelle en pratiques (pp. 373-384). Bruxelles : Mardaga.

Maccioni, J., & Juliens, C.  (2016). Sur les compétences interculturelles: Enjeux et pratiques. Special issue of Les Politiques Sociales, 3/4.

Maccioni, J. (2014). Vers la compétence interculturelle dans les soins. Contact, 139, 11-12.

De Pauw, S., Maccioni, J., & Efira, A. (2014). Patients drépanocytaires: Quel accompagnement médical spécifique lors de l’adolescence? Revue médicale de Bruxelles, 35, 87-95.

[Création de livret]. (2012). Entre soignants et patients croyants: 4 représentants religieux nous informent. Question Santé ASBL, 1-27.

Maccioni, J., Etienne, A., & Efira, A. (2012). Le patient étranger face au cancer : projet d’accompagnement multiculturel. Santé Conjuguée, 59, 13-17.

Maccioni, J., Etienne, A., & Efira, A. (2011). Accompagnement multiculturel de patients étrangers. Agenda Interculturel, 289, 18-20.

Work for CID:

Johanna Maccioni has written Constructing Intercultural Dialogues #1: Lullabies, as well as a guest post, Overlanding from Brussels to Kuala Lumpur: A few comments on interactions along the way.

CFP Intercultural Competence in Communication and Education (Malaysia)

Call For Papers
(Deadline for submissions: 31st December 2014)

International Conference on
Intercultural Competence in Communication and Education (ICCEd-2015)
8-9 April 2015

Presented by the Faculty of Modern Languages and Communication,
Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia
In cooperation with the Department of Teacher Education, University of Helsinki, Finland and the Helsinki School of Interculturality

Plenary speakers:
*Adrian Holliday, Professor
University of Canterbury Christ Church, United Kingdom
*Fred Dervin, Professor
University of Helsinki, Finland
*Ingrid Piller, Professor
Macquarie University, Australia
*Ezhar Tamam, Professor
Universiti Putra Malaysia

About the Conference
Contradictorily the concept of intercultural competence is both polysemic and empty at the same time. Researchers, practitioners but also decision makers use it almost mechanically without always worrying about its meaning(s), the ideologies it represents, the impact(s) it has on those who are embedded in its discussions and the injustice it can (too easily) lead to such as neo-racism. A few ‘usual suspects’ – mostly derived from English-speaking researchers/practitioners who enjoy prestige thanks to the symbolic violence of English as a World Language and/or prestigious supranational support – whose work is systematically (and uncritically) mentioned have often managed volens nolens to keep mainstream global understandings of intercultural competence simplified, fuzzy, idealistic and/or unrealistic. For example the ‘faulty’ keywords of culture, tolerance and respect are still present in discussions of intercultural competence.

This call for papers is interested in new, critical and original discussions and approaches to intercultural competence that go beyond these problematic ‘macdonaldised’ models and ‘reinventing the wheel’ perspectives. The conference is interdisciplinary and covers the ‘broad’ fields of communication and education.

The organisers are looking for contributions which are questioning the most ‘influential’ models of intercultural competence and/or who have attempted (un)successfully to develop new understandings and models of intercultural competence. The organisers wish to promote the idea that failure is also inherent to intercultural competence. The question of assessment can be touched upon but the idea that intercultural competence can be summatively assessed should be abandoned. The organisers consider intercultural competence to be synonymous with multicultural competence, cross-cultural competence, global competence, etc. as these labels are also unstable and have many different meanings.

The organisers are especially interested in fresh perspectives from all parts of the world. Historical/diachronic papers ‘denouncing’ reinventing the wheel approaches as well as alternative methods and approaches are very welcome (e.g. use of bodily experiences).

The following themes (among others) can be dealt with:
–  What’s wrong with current approaches? What mistakes have been made in the past and today – especially from researchers’ perspectives?
–  What are the myths around the concept of intercultural competence?
–  Is the idea of intercultural competence a thing of the past? How does it compare to intracultural competence (if such a thing exists)?
–  Can the idea of intercultural competence be really useful for conflictual situations? How can we explain conflicts – which are necessary – beyond the usual suspect of cultural difference?
–   What can we do with old and tired concepts such as identity, culture and community when we talk about intercultural competence?
– How is Intercultural competence understood/taken into consideration in the context of Arabic/English/French/Mandarin… as a lingua franca?
– How do students and e.g. mobile students understand intercultural competence? What seems to influence them?
– How is the ‘teaching’ of intercultural competence implemented in second/foreign language classrooms? Does it echo the teaching of intercultural competence in communication/ management and vice versa?
–  (How) can we move from an individualistic approach to intercultural competence to interactive and co-constructivist ones?
– With increasing use of digital technologies, how does intercultural competence fare?
–  Can neurosciences contribute to renewing the idea of intercultural competence? What about art, music, etc.?

Proposal submission
We invite scholars and professionals to submit proposals (in English) before 31st December 2014. Abstracts should be submitted by email.
Please embed your abstract in the body of your message – no attachment!

Paper and colloquia proposals are invited.
1 Individual paper proposals (200-300 words; duration: 30 minutes including a twenty-minute presentation, with an additional ten minutes for discussion).
2 Colloquia proposals (200 words for the colloquium concept and 200-300 words on each paper, duration: 3h, max. 5 participants – conveners and discussant included)

Please note that only one paper per person can be submitted.
Abstracts will be reviewed by the scientific committee for originality, significance, clarity and academic rigour. Decisions about the submitted papers: 15 January 2015

International publications will report on the conference in 2016-2017 (information forthcoming).

Registrations fees:
Early bird (by 31 January 2015):
•    Local presenters/participants: RM400
•    Local students: RM250
•    International presenters/ participants: US175
•    International students: US145

Registration (1 February- 1 April 2015):
•    Local presenters/ participants RM500
•    Local Students: RM350
•    International presenters/participants US220
•    International students: US190

•    Faculty of Modern Languages and Communication, Universiti Putra Malaysia
•    University of Helsinki, Finland
•    Helsinki School of Interculturality, Finland

Scientific Chairs and Chairs of the Organizing Committee:
•    Chairperson: Dr. Régis Machart, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia
•    Deputy Chairperson, Head of the Scientific Committee: Prof. Fred Dervin, University of Helsinki, Finland

International Scientific Committee:
•    Andreotti Vanessa, University of British Columbia, Canada
•    Baker Will, University of Southampton, UK
•    Barbot Marie-José, University of Lille, France
•    Brunila Kristiina, University of Helsinki, Finland
•    Byrd Clark Julie, University of Western, Canada
•    C. K. Raju, Albukhari International University, Malaysia
•    Du Xiangyun, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
•    Holmes Prue, Durham University, UK
•    Kaur Jagdish, University Malaya, Malaysia
•    Kyeyune Robinah, Makerere University, Uganda
•    Phipps Alison, University of Glasgow, UK
•    Risager Karen, University of Roskilde, Denmark
•    Skyrme Gillian, Massey University, New Zealand
•    Trémion Virginie, Catholic University of Paris, France
•    Tushar Chauduri, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong
•    Wolf Alain, University of East Anglia, UK
•    Zotzmann Karin, University of Southampton, U

Assessing Intercultural Competency – Part II – by Trudy Milburn

Guest PostsAssessing Intercultural Competency – Part II
by Trudy Milburn

What’s your name?
Where did you go to school?

If your student produced this as evidence of a cultural practice, how would it rate on this AAC&U Intercultural rubric criterion?

“Demonstrates sophisticated understanding of the complexity of elements important to members of another culture in relation to its history, values, politics, communication styles, economy, or beliefs and practices.”

At first blush, the interaction sequence might seem part of any typical introduction between two people who are meeting one another for the first time. Therefore, a student who produces this might appear to be “developing” on the low end of a graduated scale with a “target” level on the higher end. An instructor may evaluate the statement as evidence of a student’s initial awareness of an interactional pattern, but as lacking a nuanced understanding that its production may indicate a culturally significant pattern. However, perhaps there is more going on with this interactional sequence than one may initially assume.

If we heed Yep’s (2000) suggestion and consider both personal and broader social histories and how these intersect, we might re-consider the produced interaction from different subject positions. Consider these additional contextual features.

While traveling with students in Northern Ireland, we heard tour guides describe a greeting ritual that included the following parts: first asking, “What’s your name?” and then, “where did you go to school?” The guide explained that learning as much as you could about your interlocutors during introductions was very important throughout the tensest moments of the Conflict. It was considered vitally important to be able to quickly position a newcomer within an appropriate category, as Catholic or Protestant. Knowing relevant category could produce fear or solidarity. One guide described that he believed people with saint names were denied access to jobs. Therefore, upon meeting someone, if one heard (or did not hear) a saint name, the follow up question was used to ascertain if the individual attended a Catholic School or not. It was this practice that led one to know on which side of the Conflict the new person was most likely to be. It may have also led to further discriminatory practices.

Coming back to the notion of assessing intercultural competence, how, then does one evaluate a student who attempts to demonstrate intercultural competence by producing such an interactional sequence? While the rubric criterion above includes many features that are valuable to consider, including the social, historical and political contexts of various communicative practices, it leads us into the same trap that Yep (2000) warns about, creating cultural “others.” Even if one notices the interaction sequence from the vantage points of the interlocutors who enact it, where does the student stand in relation to this sequence? One suggestion is that as instructors, we can help students to reflect on how noticeable practices might illustrate a belief within the student’s own culture. It may be that this interaction sequence may be so typical within one’s own culture as to initially go unnoticed. In fact, as instructors who are conducting intercultural assessment, perhaps we should consider our own potential biases towards such practices and consider how our cultural beliefs influence both how we instruct as well as how we assess intercultural competency.

In my next post, I will consider the types of methods used for assessing intercultural competence as well as the role of assessors in this work.

Yep, G. A. (2000). Encounters with the ‘other’: Personal notes for a reconceptualization of intercultural communication competence. CATESOL Journal, 12(1), 117-144.

Download the entire post as a PDF.

Università della Svizzera italiana job ad

Università della Svizzera italiana
Faculty of Communication Sciences

The Institute for Public Communication of the Faculty of Communication Sciences invites applications for a full time tenure track position as Assistant Professor of Intercultural Communication.

The Faculty of Communication Sciences is characterized by its emphasis on research and commitment to the highest teaching standards. It offers a young and dynamic context which is highly international and interdisciplinary, studying Communication from many complementary viewpoints, both as disciplines and as fields of application.

Research and teaching carried out within the Institute for Public Communication cover different fields, ranging from public communication and political communication to social marketing, communication law and psychology. So far intercultural communication has been part of the public communication area. It has now been decided to develop this growing field as a specific area of research and teaching within the Institute.

The new chair of intercultural communication will be multi-disciplinary in nature and address both the theoretical and practical dynamics linked to intercultural communication. The core areas of interest are intercultural competence, communication in and with intercultural communities and organisations as well as the challenges of internationality and plurilingualism. The research orientations should be developed in collaboration, and where possible in synergy, with the other research projects underway in the Institute and the Faculty.

We look for candidates in particular from the field of communication sciences, but also from political science, sociology, public administration, anthropology, linguistics and other related fields. A strong commitment to research and solid methodological grounding should be demonstrated by publications in international peer-reviewed journals and other significant publications in the field. A demonstrated ability to address the theoretical and practical issues of intercultural communication will also be valued. Prior professional experience in intercultural contexts, whether in government, administration, NGOs or international organisations, as well as multilingual proficiency are significant asset for this position.

Job description and responsibilities
The successful candidate will be expected to:
*promote and develop the area of intercultural communication within the Institute for Public Communication;
*teach introductory courses at the Bachelor level and more specialized courses at the Master level, notably as part of the Master in Public Management and Policy (the teaching workload encompasses 9 ECTS for an assistant professor);
*develop and carry-out a research agenda centred on Intercultural Communication, including the obtention of research grants, the publication of academic contributions and the active participation to and contribution in international academic forums;
*assume the academic responsibility of the Executive Master in Intercultural Communication and of the Eurocampus programme;
*co-ordinate research assistants’ activities and supervise PhD candidates;
*participate actively in the work of the Faculty Council and related ad-hoc bodies notably within the Institute for Public Communication. The candidate could, for example, take the direction of the Laboratorio di Studi Mediterranei.

The ideal candidate will have:
*a Ph.D. in Intercultural Communication or in a field related to intercultural communication;
*a documented contribution to research in the field, notably through publications and
conference presentations;
*adequate experience of teaching academic courses on the subject at various levels;
*experience of designing, developing and coordinating educational programmes in the field;
*experience of, or at least the willingness to address the issue of intercultural communication in the Swiss context;
*professional experiences in intercultural contexts;
*active participation in the field’s international research and educational networks, as well as demonstrated leadership and commitment to service to the institution and to the profession.

The application is for an assistant professor rank position.

Since USI aims to increase the percentage of women in research and teaching, women academics are particularly encouraged to apply.

Residence and language
The professor should reside in Ticino (Italian-speaking part of Switzerland); he or she is expected to be present at the university for no less than four days a week. The University’s graduate programmes are mainly taught in English, while Bachelor classes are taught in Italian. Fluency in Italian, while beneficial, will be required from the second year. Knowledge of other languages, in particular an official language of Switzerland (French or German), is a valuable asset for this position.

Required documentation
Applicants should submit:
*a letter of application addressed to the Dean of the Faculty
*a detailed CV/resume and list of publications, together with documentation of relevant academic qualifications, teaching and professional experience
*copies of a minimum of 3 and maximum of 10 publications of relevance for the position

Please send copy of the application in digital form.

Application received by end of September 2014 will be given priority.
Please send your complete application file to the Faculty Dean:
Prof. Lorenzo Cantoni
Facoltà di scienze della comunicazione
Università della Svizzera italiana
Via Giuseppe Buffi 13
CH-6904 Lugano

For further information, please contact the Director of the Institute for Public Communication
Prof. Bertil Cottier

Olena Zelikovska Micro Grant Award

Olena ZelikovskaOlena Zelikovska has been awarded a micro grant for international travel, funded by the Association for Business Communication through the Center for Intercultural Dialogue. The following is her description of herself and the project. You can also read the main article describing all award winners.

Dr. Olena Zelikovska is an Associate Professor in the Department of English for Economic Specialties at the National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine (NULESU). For the last 10 years she has been working as a focal point in developing curriculum of “Business English” and ‘Translation of Commercial Correspondence and Business Communication’ for undergraduate and graduate students majoring in Economics, Management of International Affairs and Linguistics as well as in supervising students’ research projects with the focus on intercultural communication issues.

In 2010, Zelikovska defended the thesis: ‘Developing intercultural competence in the students of higher economic educational institutions’ (adopted by the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine). She has been chairing the Student’s Research Group “Business Environment and Intercultural Communication” since 2011.

Zelikovska has been constantly seeking for international cooperation to provide the students with valuable practical experience. She is interested in project-based programs designed to connect American and Ukrainian students in a distance learning opportunity that is grounded in intercultural dialogue and exchange.

Project background: The growing importance of English as an instrument of international communication on the global scale and its increased use in Ukraine has triggered research about improved methods to develop university students’ intercultural competence (ICC). This has promoted changes in both the teaching and learning process. However lack of students’ cross-cultural communication experience has resulted in low sensitivity of intercultural issues. The initial discussion has shown that the NULESU students majoring in Management of International Affairs or in Linguistics have very little idea about intercultural communication (IC). For instance, they are unaware of the privacy zone character of the American culture and can easily use the patterns of direct language imposing their ideas and feelings on the interlocutor as they commonly do in Ukrainian culture with higher power distance and no privacy space. Moreover English classroom communicative behavior of the majority of faculty staff unfortunately does not often correlate with such behavior of their American colleagues. That is why the traditional teaching practice does not achieve the expected results on developing ICC.

The key to the solution may be the application of the 3-component intercultural development model that provides knowledge (cognitive element of the model), foster awareness (affective element of the model) and develop skills (behavioral element of the model). The proposed project seeks to assess the interrelated issues: How to fill each component of the model with the intercultural communication content tailored to the particular needs of the individual student? How do these components correlate with each other? What issues should be submitted for Student’s Research Group? How to launch distant projects between American and Ukrainian students to enrich each other with learning by experience? The development of classroom communicative behavior of the department staff is the issue of special importance. The project will provide the unique opportunity for the grant holder to study all these processes as a system at the Californian State University by classroom observation, students and faculty staff surveying and discussions with further analysis of the data collected. The ultimate goal of the research is to empower Ukrainian students with intercultural awareness enabling them to develop empathy, tolerance and mutual understanding with their American peers.

9th Congress IAIR Bergen (Norway) 2015

The 9th Biennial Congress of the International Academy for Intercultural Research

Realizing the potential of Cultural Diversity in the society and at the workplace

There is hardly any large society that is presently ethnically homogenous as a result of domestic and international migration. The foreign-populations of many societies are increasing at unprecedented rates. For instance, it has been estimated that by 2050, 85% of Australia‘s population growth will be either from overseas migration or from native born Australians who have at least one foreign-born parent. Europe will need 80 million immigrants by 2030, while the US, Japan and Canada will need 35 million, 17 million, and 11 million immigrants by 2030, respectively (Saunders, 2010).

The aging population of the world, particularly in Western industrialized countries, and unemployment and economic stagnation in many countries, will put pressure on the economies of Western industrialized countries in the form of increased migration, bringing people of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds together in ways that have never been seen before.

These demographic changes have wide range of implications for the governance of nation-building including employment, health, education, housing, economics, politics, culture, intergroup relationships and so forth.  Depending on which angle one takes, the results can be either positive or negative.  Unfortunately, events such as the terror attacks in major European cities including Madrid (2004), in London (2005) and in Oslo/Utøya (Norway, 2011) together with the Danish cartoon drawings of Mohammed are some negative instances of intercultural relations.  European leaders have not fared any better when they incite skepticism by suggesting that multiculturalism has been a failure. These pessimistic statements undermine and diminish the positive aspects of cultural diversity.

It is within this context that this conference is organized, with the theme – Realizing the potential of cultural diversity.

Realizing the potential of cultural diversity in the workplace and society will challenge societies politically, economically, socially, legally and culturally. This challenge will require a parallel effort to achieve equity and full participation of all cultural communities in the larger society. Any discussion around the topics will require a multi-disciplinary approach.  Hence the planned conference will attract scholars from psychology, and many related fields and disciplines. Indeed the ultimate goal of this conference will be to bring to Bergen the leading scholars of the world to share research findings, engage in dialogue on how to tap into the positive sides of cultural diversity, and how employers, institutions, and governments can realize its potential. The conference will include Keynote presentations by leading scholars, symposia, individual papers, posters and round table discussions, including debates. During the past three conferences, the Academy has also devoted a whole day to a workshop – Fellows’ Day – just before the opening of the conference where the Fellows of the Academy engage in a series of discussions regarding the conference theme.

The Conference is hosted by:
Society and Workplace Diversity Research Group, Department of Psychosocial Science, University of Bergen

Administratively, the Department of Psychosocial Science is responsible for the running of the conference, but the practical activities regarding the conference will be coordinated by the Society and Workplace Diversity Research group in close collaboration with the Congress Bureau (Kongress og Kultur – KK-Bergen). While the Research Group will be responsible for the scientific side of the conference, the all practical organization will be taken care of by the Congress Bureau.

Venue:  Most of the congress program will be held at the Bjørn Christiansen Building, Christiesgate 12

Submission of proposals opens: March 1, 2014
1st proposal  Deadline: November 1, 2014
Accepted Decision: December 15, 2014
2nd proposal deadline: December 31, 2014
Accepted decision: February 15, 2015

Sample of thematic topics
*Cultural diversity in the society
*Cultural diversity at the work place
*Migration, Acculturation, and Adjustment
*Intercultural competence and training
*Intercultural communication