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The Need for Cross- Cultural Competence (3C). Overview Introductory Video What is Culture Cross-Cultural Competence (3C) Why Understanding Culture is.

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Presentation on theme: "The Need for Cross- Cultural Competence (3C). Overview Introductory Video What is Culture Cross-Cultural Competence (3C) Why Understanding Culture is."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Need for Cross- Cultural Competence (3C)

2 Overview Introductory Video What is Culture Cross-Cultural Competence (3C) Why Understanding Culture is Important

3 Introductory Video

4 What is Culture? Culture is like dropping an Alka- Seltzer into a glass—you don’t see it, but somehow it does something. ~ Hans Magnus Enzensberger (German author and poet) Culture is roughly anything we do and the monkeys don’t. ~ Lord Raglan (British Soldier 1788-1855)

5 Tylor’s Definition: “…that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom, and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society.” As applied to areas of the world to be conquered and colonized: –We have culture and you don’t! –Civilized vs. Uncivilized What is Culture?

6 Ethnocentrists see their culture as best and by default measure all other cultures by their own standard Cultural Relativists are open to trying to understand different cultures within the context of that particular culture Thought Question: Can Airmen always be cultural relativists? Ethnocentrism vs. Cultural Relativism

7 Building our Definition of Culture Culture… –is a state of mind –involves affiliation –is a tool –is made up of domains

8 Building our Definition of Culture Characteristics of Culture –Learned and shared –Symbolic –Holistic –Influences and is influenced So when we add all this together we get…

9 Our Definition Culture is the creation, maintenance, and transformation across generations of semi- shared patterns of meaning, sense-making, affiliation, action, and organization by groups - Air Force Culture and Language Center

10 What is Competence? “Having suitable or sufficient skill, knowledge, experience, etc., for some purpose; properly qualified.” ~ Random House Dictionary  How do we know someone is competent?

11 AFOQT Physical Requirements Get Commissioned (USAFA, ROTC, OTS) Understanding Competence: Becoming an AF Pilot

12 AF Undergraduate Pilot Training (academics) Flight Training Operational Aircraft Training and Qualification Understanding Competence: Becoming an AF Pilot

13 The ability to quickly and accurately comprehend, then appropriately and effectively act in a culturally complex environment to achieve the desired effect. But developing 3C is also a process Cross-Cultural Competence

14 Culture-General Knowing what culture is Understanding foundational concepts of culture Developing basic skills in dealing with different cultures Culture-Specific Becoming familiar with regionally specific knowledge and language that will orient you to various cultures FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLE: Those who have the most cross-cultural competence are the ones who possess knowledge, skills, and attitudes in BOTH of these areas.

15 Why Understanding Culture is Important It helps you become “The Other” It is a force multiplier It is a means of building stable institutions

16 Being “The Other” When you deploy, you are defined by the natives as “The Other” Usually a very narrow definition: American Military Becoming “The Other” You see yourself as the other person sees you “When two people meet, there are really six people present. There is each man as he sees himself, each man as he wants to be seen, and each man as he really is.” ~ Michael De Saintamo But there is also each person as the other sees him or her.Other How does this happen?

17 An Example of Being The Other and Becoming The Other: Joining the Military

18 Becoming “The Other” You look at yourself through the native’s cultural lens You become less ethnocentric and more cultural relative You can better adapt your words and actions

19 Culture as a Force Multiplier A capability that, when added to and employed by a combat force, significantly increases the combat potential of that force Geographical terrain vs. human terrain “Many hands make light work”

20 One of our goals—Assist people caught in conflict to develop stable institutions (e.g., political, social, economic, etc.) US Africa Command (AFRICOM): Leverages “relationships between security, development, diplomacy, and prosperity; enables DOD to focus its resources to…help African nations, the African Union, and the regional economic communities succeed.” Building Stable Institutions “…we are helping the long-suffering people of that country to build a decent and democratic society…” ~ Former President George W. Bush, Sep 2003

21 Developing and enhancing your 3C abilities will help promote better relations with foreign cultures and coalition partners, and will ultimately help you exert positive influence in culturally complex situations “Cross-cultural awareness and sensitivity are…basic survival skills for almost everyone.” ~ Craig Storti, cross- cultural author and trainer The Bottom Line on 3C

22 Summary Introductory Video What is Culture Cross-Cultural Competence (3C) Why Understanding Culture is Important


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