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Working in a Cross Cultural Team

Berry’s Model of Acculturation

Berry’s Model of Acculturation, also known as Berry’s Fourfold Model, is something that can be used for Cross Cultural Teams, despite not being created for Cross Cultural Teams. It consist of four separate boxes:

* Assimilation – Where someone from a different culture adopts the cultural norm of the county/region that they have moved to (Cohen, 2011, 7).

* Integration – Where people adopt both the dominant culture and their original culture, combining the two at the same time (Cohen, 2011, 9).

* Separation – When someone rejects the dominant culture and keep their culture of origin instead (Cohen, 2011, 10).

* Marginalization – When someone rejects both their original culture and the cultural norm (Cohen, 2011, 11).

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However, this model does have major faults. For example, it doesn’t consider the fact that someone from a different culture might not adopt the cultural norm, might choose to reject their original culture and might choose a completely different culture. There is no section on the model above for this, therefore making the model potentially obsolete.

There is another major fault too as, once in one of the sections in the model, you’re not meant to be able to move to another of the sections. It doesn’t take into consideration the fact that, while someone may want to reject a specific culture, they may want to adapt to that culture later on. They also might be in the process of rejecting a specific culture they belonged to before while adapting to a new or different culture. Therefore the model needs to be completely redesigned to allow movement. Instead of using boxes for the four separate sections, a Venn diagram could be used instead. This would solve the problem of transaction in between the different sections, something that is a problem with the original model. Below is what Berry’s Model of Acculturation if it were a Venn diagram.

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