Center for Advanced Management




Prof. Syeda Arzu Wasti (Sabanci University)


  • Datum: 25.02.2014
    Zeit: 10:30 - 12:00
    Ort: Ludwigstr. 28, VG, Raum 305

"Critical Trust Incidents across Cultures: A Study on Dignity, Face and Honor Cultures"

This study compares and contrasts critical trust formation and violation incidents across three employee samples, which represent face (Singapore), honor (Turkey) and dignity (United States) cultures, respectively. The dignity-face-honor (DFH) framework is primarily concerned with the concepts of self- versus socially-conferred worth; however, it also holds important implications for cultural differences in trustworthiness, trust formation and violation, and reactions to violations, which so far have not been thoroughly developed or tested. To this end, Singaporean (N=129), Turkish (N=77) and American (N=164) participants were asked to describe a critical trust and a distrust incident they experienced at the workplace. The resultant data was initially analyzed with the Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count (LIWC) and DICTION, which are text-analysis programs based on the assumption that one’s characteristic thoughts and emotions can be reflected through his or her usage of particular words. This preliminary analysis showed that the Americans, in contrast to both Turkish and Singaporeans respondents, were less likely to make references to social and contextual cues. While these are in line with the broader individualism versus collectivism dimension, results also indicated that Singaporeans used more inhibition-related words as opposed to the Turks, who used the fewest tentative words in distrust incidents. This latter finding is consistent with the face versus honor distinction, which argues that members of honor cultures are likely to retaliate and escalate situations where self-worth is challenged. Drawing on these results and the DFH framework, a coding scheme that aims to capture the attributes of the trustee and the situation (e.g., accountability to power holders, group versus individual concerns, visibility) has been developed to uncover what constellation of factors render trust relevant in different cultures. The preliminary findings will be presented.