Culture can be defined to include the beliefs, knowledge, morals, custom, art and other capabilities, habits that were acquired by an individual from other individuals or members of the society. Culture refers to the social domain that includes the discourses, the practices, and expressions of the materials. E.B. Taylor defines culture to include other aspects such as the clothing, music, language and food that distinguishes particular members of the society from other societal members (Hammond, 2005). The Cambridge English Dictionary has also defined culture as the peoples way of life which defines the beliefs and general customs of particular groups of people in the society. Additionally, the Terror of Management Theory argues that culture is significant in the society because it defines the worldviews and activities that give human beings the basis to regard themselves as human beings.
United Arab Emirates has various people from different cultures who occupy the UAE region. Even though the region had small groups of people who were defined by skewed culture norms, the regions culture has expanded after the arrival of other people from different parts of the world. The traditional culture of the United Arab Emirates people has impacted by the Persian, the Islamic and culture from the Arab people from other regions of the Middle East which include the music, attire, the cuisine, the architectural designs and also the lifestyles of such people. Currently, Emirates culture is basically based on the Arabian culture (Walsh, 2007). In the UAE, the systems of knowledge are shared by various groups of people. The knowledge is diverse and mainly concentrated on the Islamic law. The United Arab Emirates teaches their children on the importance of Islamic law. The education in the UAE majorly dwells on the teaching of such aspects as the knowledge, the skills, the attitudes and the motives. The symbols meanings are deliberately learned and perpetuated in the society through various institutions of learning. In the UEA, culture involves the implicit, the explicit and behavior that is acquired from one group of the people and pass to the different groups within the region.
The culture in the UAE region is composed of multicultural and diverse society. The United Arab Emirates once had an ethnically small and homogenous community before the arrival of other people from various regions of the world. For example, after the arrival of the Iranians in the year 1900s, they resulted in the ethnic tensions and frequently affected the culture of such a community (Hammond, 2005). UAE respect the etiquette as a significant aspect of the society as through it that people of the U.A.E preserve their traditions and culture. It is a norm that has been regarding as showing respect to the elders and other older people in the society. For example, when young men are present during the meeting, they are expected to show respect to the older people and listen attentively to their directives and talk less during such occasions. Furthermore, the UAE viewed sex segregation as the cultural value and used to teach people the important of sexual groups and orientation.
Definition of Cultural Norms
Cultural norms refer to the patterns and culture of behavior and the attitudes towards particular behavior which is considered either normal or abnormal, average and typical within the society. The cultural norms in the society are transferred from one particular group to the other through such aspects as the education, family interactions, and the government structures. According to guide on sociological studies, cultural norms influence the people's way of living which include the attitudes, values and the way people behave in the society (Walsh, 2007). The norms and culture are intertwined, and for the people live in the society harmoniously, they should be in the position to conform to the cultural norms found in that society. Cultural norms in the UAE are regarded as the good manners and carry prized attributes from the people in that society (Vinnicombe et.al, 2016).
The people in the UAE consider norms as the agreed-upon rules and expectations which guide their behavior and their interactions within the society. For example, the averting of the eyes is regarded in the UAE as a way of showing respect and politeness. Sociologists from the region also argue that Folkways are important aspects of the region since they provide the customs and conventions. The standard of behavior found in the region is morally significant and socially approved (Sheikh Abdullah, 2009). In the UAE, people are guided by the mores to show the moral behavior. Some behavior in the region, for example, the way of dressing by women are considered taboo and the culture absolutely forbids them from coping the dressing behavior of the Western countries such as the U.S.A. Furthermore, the majority of the societies in the UAE follow the culturally accepted laws rather than the laws made through the legislation.
In the UAE, members of the society should conform to the cultural norms and rules found in the region. The people are required by the culturally accepted laws to internalize the values and social norms to ensure that the people within such a society live harmoniously. Whenever an individual goes against the socially accepted norms and behaviors, he or she is entitled to receive punishment from the people of the society (Sheikh Abdullah, 2009. The nature of separating differences regarding the culture has been united through the accepted cultural norms. Harreiz argues that the manner in which the people in UAE have become united is attributed to the strong cultural norms shared among such individuals. Furthermore, the cultural excursions of the region only allow tourists to visit and learned of the region but should not negatively affect the UAE culture.
The cultural theory of risk is a significant theory that encompasses the conceptual framework and the explanation of societal risks resulting from the clashing of diverse cultural aspects. It further explains that the societal structures provide perceptions of reinforcing cultural competitions and looking for ways of harmonizing such differences to reduce the crisis associated with the cultural clashing. The theory was advanced by Mary Douglas and Aaron Wildavsky. According to Douglas, there are varied individual perceptions towards the cultural risks and through collective efforts and interactions, people can address such crisis. In the year 1982, Wildavsky argued that risk and culture were among the factors that can contribute to the political and environmental challenges (Gitsaki, 2011). She argues that even though culture defines peoples way of life, cultural differences might be dangerous to the mutual coexistence in the society.
What is the significance of culture and cultural diversity in the society?
What is the relationship between the cultural norms and the societal diversity and peaceful coexistence?
How can the society use cultural diversity to address management crisis in the UAE?
UAE Culture and Management Crisis
Definition of Management Crisis
The management crisis is a situation that occurs when various cultures clash in the workplace and thus resulting in chaos and violence among the employees, management and others stakeholders. The United Arab Emirates is a region that is being faced by many issues ranging from the economic, political and demographic issues. The region borders Africa, Asia, Europe and these countries have different cultural norms to those of the UAE. Furthermore, there various groups that live in the United Arab Emirates which include the Pakistani, the Bangladeshi, the Africans, the Emirati and also the Indians. Even though the culture of the region dates back to about 3500 years ago, most of the cultural norms affect the young people (Herman, 2011). For instance, fifty-five percent of the people living in the United Arab Emirates composed of the young people who are below the age of twenty-five years. The young people tend to have diverse culture compared to the old people who are rigid and tend to maintain the old cultural methods. The region is also endowed with natural resources which include the oil, the aluminum, the banking services and tourism sector. These aspects of the economy have attracted various people from different parts of the world.
Thus, the companies, private and government organizations have attracted many people from different cultures. The cultural diversity of the people in the Middle East has made it difficult to manage the diversity of the people. For example, the Westerners view the UAE as a region that is faced with conflicts as many people of various nationalities work and live in the region. The UAE is among the world regions that has a high influx of international workers. Politically, the region has been faced with challenges that include the way of choosing political leaders from various groups of the people from the region (Nathan, 2009). Furthermore, business people who include Sheikh Mohammed have been attributing the region as an international hub for leisure and business (Herman, 2011). To address the problem of cultural diversity and management, the UAE recognizes the Islamic religion as the binding factor among the Islamic people. Thus, according to Herman Miller, most of the business transactions are carried using the Islamic language it is translated to the English language to cater for the needs of other people within the region who do not understand the Islamic language (United Arab Emirates, & Motivate Publishing, 1991).
In the workplace, different people from diverse cultures work are allowed to work but to ensure morality in such places; there is a common way of dressing which everybody is required dress and thus maintain moral behaviors. Furthermore, in the public or private sectors, the places also have the norms that guide them and make them work nicely in such places (Nathan, 2009). Furthermore, people in the region are guided by the cultural norms whenever they are seeking for higher positions in the organizations to ensure fair management of such workplaces and avoid leadership crisis.
Culture Norms Sources
Hammond, A. (2005). Pop culture Arab world!: Media, arts, and lifestyle. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO.
Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan (2009). Culture and Information. Dubai
Vinnicombe, Susan, Anderson, Deirdre, Hussain, & Nazia. (2016). Assessing the impact of religion and family in shaping UAE national womens choice of, and engagement with their careers. Cranfield University.
Gitsaki, C. (2011). Teaching and learning in the Arab world. Bern: P. Lang.
Walsh, J. (2007). UAE - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture. London: KuperardUAE Culture and Management Crisis
Herman, Miller (2011). Culture and Work Styles in Dubai. Dubai.
Nathan, Al-Khazraji (2009). The Culture of Commercialism: Globalization in the United Arab Emirates. Georgetown University Washington, D.C.
Teagarden, M. B., Pashtenko, V. H., Ahmed, Z. U., Abdul, R. C., Nor, H. A., Mohd, Z. A., Academy for Global Business Advancement. (2009). Advances in global business research. Rockwall, TX: Academy for Global Business Advancement.
United Arab Emirates, & Motivate Publishing. (1991). Doing business in the UAE. Abu Dhabi: Motivate Pub.
International Conference on Sustainable Development and Planning, Brebbia, C. A., & Beriatos, E. (2011). Sustainable development and planning V. Oxford
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