Stable versus flexible dynamic decision making across cultures: A growth mixture modeling approach

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Dynamic decision making can follow various strategic patterns, one of them being stability versus flexibility. This paper investigates two competing theories explaining stability versus flexibility in 40 German business students, 51 U.S. business students, and 66 U.S. psychology students. Following cross-cultural psychological research, German students should have higher levels of uncertainty avoidance (Hofstede, 2001), more intolerant of ambiguities, and less flexible in their decisions when compared to their U.S. business and psychology counterparts. Following research on expertise and the deliberate practice theory (Ericsson, Krampe, & Tesch-Römer, 1993), German and U.S. business students should show more flexible strategies when compared to the U.S. psychology student novices. Participants took the role of managers in the computer-simulated company CHOCO FINE and worked on 24 simulated months of the simulation individually over a period of 2 hours. Surprisingly, the German sample was actually less intolerant of ambiguity than the two U.S. samples. Uncertainty avoidance and intolerance of ambiguity did not predict DDM intensity or flexibility. Results showed crosscultural differences but no differences between novices and experts.

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Advances in Design for Cross-Cultural Activities Part II

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