Power Distance and Verbal Index in Kazakh Business Discourse

Buadat Karibayeva, Salima S. Kunanbayeva


Kazakh business discourse is a relatively new area for research, and hence many of the cultural preferences are yet to be explored. This paper focuses on measuring Hofstede’s power distance index for Kazakh culture. A novel technique is proposed, where verbal index is calculated from analysis of publically available texts delivered by representatives of different cultures. In particular, we analyzed public speeches delivered by leaders ofNew Zealand,UK,Germany,Australia,USA,Greece,China,India, andKazakhstan. From these texts we derived a verbal index, which closely correlated to Hofstede’s power distance data. As a result, we were able to obtain a power distance index of 58 forKazakhstan, which was previously unavailable in literature. Furthermore, this method can be used as a cheaper alternative to conducting surveys in estimating Hofstede’s power distance indexes for different cultures.



Power distance, business discourse, language context

Full Text:



Anderson, J. A. (1988). Cognitive styles and multicultural populations. Journal of Teacher Education, 39(1), 2-9.

Basabe, N., Ros, M. (2005). Cultural dimensions and social behavior correlates: Individualism-Collectivism and Power Distance. International Review of Social Psychology. 18(1), 189-225.

Blum-Kulka, S., Olshtain, E. (1984). Requests and Apologies: A Cross-Cultural Study of Speech Act Realization Patterns (CCSARP). Applied linguistics, 5(3), 196-213.

Bochner, S., Hesketh, B. (1994). Power distance, individualism/collectivism, and job-related attitudes in a culturally diverse work group. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 25(2), 233-257.

Brockner, J., Ackerman, G., Greenberg, J., Gelfand, M., Francesco, A., Chen, Z., Shapiro, D. (2001). Culture and procedural justice: The influence of power distance on reactions to voice. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. 37, 300-315.

Daller, H., Yildiz, C. (2006). Power distance at work: The cases of Turkey, successor states of the former Soviet Union and Western Europe. Journal of Politeness Research. Language, Behaviour, Culture. 2(1), 35-53.

Davidson, W.H. (1980). The location of foreign direct investment activity: Country characteristics and experience effects. Journal of International Business Studies, 11(2), 9-22.

Eslamirasekh, Z. (1993). A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Requestive Speech Act Realization Patterns in Persian and American English. Pragmatics and Language Learning, 4, 85-103.

Eylon, D., Au, K. (1999). Exploring empowerment cross-cultural differences along the power distance dimension. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 23(3), 373-385.

Farh, J., Hackett, R., Liang, J. (2007). Individual-level cultural values as moderators of perceived organizational support-employee outcome relationships in China: Comparing the effects of power distance and traditionality. Academy of Management Journal, 50, 715-729.

Hofstede, G. (1980). Culture’s Consequences: International Differences in Work-Related Values. Beverly Hills: Sage.

Hofstede, G. (2001). Culture’s Consequences – Second Edition: Comparing Values, Behaviors, Institutions and Organizations Across Nations. London: Sage

Iwasaki, I., Suganuma, K. (2013). A gravity model of Russian trade: the role of foreign direct investment and socio-cultural similarity. Kunitachi, Tokyo, Japan: Russian Research Center, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University, 40

Karibayeva, B., Kunanbayeva, S. (2015). Kazakh Business Discourse: Peculiarities of Kazakh Business Meetings. PEOPLE: International Journal of Social Sciences, 2(1), 1455-1462.

Karibayeva, B., Kunanbayeva, S. (2016). Intercultural Business Discourse: Characteristics of Kazakh Context. Proceedings of INTCESS2016 3rd International Conference on Education and Social Sciences, 154-157.

Lee, C., Pillutla, M., Law, K. (2000). Power-distance, gender and organizational justice. Journal of Management, 26, 685-704.

Scherer, K.R. (2000). A cross-cultural investigation of emotion inferences from voice and speech: implications for speech technology. In D. Guan, R. Zhang, B. Yua, T. Huang (Eds.), Sixth International Conference on Spoken Language Proceeding, ICSLP 2000/Interspeech 2000 (379-382). Beijing, China, October 16-20, 2000, Baixas, France: ISCA.

Simoes, A.J.G., Hidalgo, C.A. (2011). The Economic Complexity Observatory: An Analytical Tool for Understanding the Dynamics of Economic Development. Workshops at the Twenty-Fifth AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence.

Wolfson, N. (1981). Compliments in Cross-Cultural Perspective. TESOL quarterly, 15(2), 117-124.

Zaharna, R.S. (1995). Understanding cultural preferences of Arab communication patterns. Public Relations Review, 21(3), 241-255.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.7575/aiac.ijalel.v.6n.2p.9


  • There are currently no refbacks.

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

2012-2023 (CC-BY) Australian International Academic Centre PTY.LTD

International Journal of Applied Linguistics and English Literature

To make sure that you can receive messages from us, please add the journal emails into your e-mail 'safe list'. If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox', check your 'bulk mail' or 'junk mail' folders.