Comparative management

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About the subject

Course description

The course in Comparative management studies the national models of management—this course depicts the particularities of management in the main developed national economies in order for the students to understand the differences in management practice among those countries, as well as the factors that contribute to building a developed national economy rather than an underdeveloped one.
The course is divided in two basic parts. The first part is concerned with the cultural elements that produce managerial differences among countries; culture is approached mainly on the basis of Hofstede’s cultural dimensions. The second part focuses the features of the models of management in USA, Japan and Western Europe (Germany, France, and UK).

Course objectives

Upon completion of this course, students should be able to:

  • Outline the defining features of the main national models of management.
  • Present important managerial solutions successfully used in the developed economies.
  • Explain the influence of the cultural factors upon the economic development of one country.
  • Identify the cultural elements of Romanian society that have or may have a negative influence upon the economic development.
  • Explain the necessity and the limits of importing foreign managerial solutions in Romania.
  • Outline a path that Romania should follow in order to match the European managerial standards and to accelerate its economic development.

The material covered will be relevant to, but not only to, students studying management. In practice they are most likely to face organizational issues that may be resolved using different means available in the theory and practice of management from abroad, or at least inspired from those.

Prerequisites

  • Management. The discipline analyses how managerial concepts, techniques and methods are used in different countries. All these managerial things are supposed to be already known by the students.

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Delivering the subject

Target programs: MGE 3.
Course lecturer (seminar included): Dan C. Lungescu, PhD, assistant professor.

Credits: 4.

Grade reports

Student grades will be available:

  • On the Academic Info platform (login required). Every student may see his own grades here, but only after the examinations session is over. Of course, the only grades available there will be the final, official grades (integers from 10 to 1).
  • In the Note | Grades page of this blog. Both the final grades and their component scores will be available there.

Documents

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Course outline

Ch. 1. Introduction to comparative management
Ch. 2. Cultural background of management
Ch. 3. Management in USA
Ch. 4. Management in Japan
Ch. 5. Management in Germany
Ch. 6. Management in France
Ch. 7. Management in United Kingdom

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Weekly topics

Week Lecture + seminar Extra
1 Course presentation
2 Introduction to Comparative management
The concept of culture
3 Elements of culture: behaviours, values, beliefs Home assignment no. 1:
Behaviours, values, beliefs
4 Hofstede’s model: Power distance Home assignment no. 2:
Power distance in Romania
5 Hofstede’s model: Individualism Home assignment no. 3:
Individualism in Romania
6 Hofstede’s model: Uncertainty avoidance Home assignment no. 4:
Uncertainty avoidance in Romania
7 Hofstede’s model: Masculinity Home assignment no. 5:
Masculinity in Romania
8 Management in USA Part-time examination no. 1:
Cultural background of management
9 Management in Japan
10 Management in Germany Part-time examination no. 2:
Management in USA and management in Japan
11 Management in France
Management in UK
12 Final review Part-time examination no. 3:
Management in Europe

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Grading

Grade structure

  • 4.0 points: final examination (open-ended questions).
  • 1.5 points: part-time examinations (3 multiple-choice tests, 10 minutes each).
  • 2.0 points: seminar activity:
    • 1.5 points: portfolio (seminar application papers);
    • 0.5 points: active involvement in discussion.
  • 1.5 points: home assignments (5×0.3 points).
  • 1.0 points: ex officio.

Other specifications

Grades are integers ranging from 1 to 10.
The final test has a pass point of 1.5 (out of 4.0); lower scores will result in exam failure, without regard to other partial scores. Nevertheless, that 1.5 is necessary, but not sufficient, for passing!

The final test includes questions from every chapter, save Chapter 1.

Application portfolio

  1. The name tent (seminar class no. 1).
  2. [to be continued]

Every seminar application may only be achieved by students who attended the seminar in question; they may not be subject to recovering and/or home activity. The student makes the piece » the professor signs it » the student keeps it and within the last seminar class he/she passes to the professor a folder with all the applications achieved » the professor checks and grades the portfolio » the student takes his/her portfolio back.

Home assignments

» Instructions to submit your home assignments.

  1. Components of culture. The student should pick a culture area: Romania or another country where he/she lived, a historical region (like Transylvania), a group of countries (like Est-Europe), a religion/confession, an organisation etc. It is important that the student have direct knowledge about that community, rather than rely on literature. On a landscape A4 page, divided into three columns (Behaviour | Values | Beliefs), the student should enumerate some relevant elements (components) specific to that culture: main people behaviours (habits), people values (what they think is write/good or wrong/bad), and people beliefs (what they think is true or false). Deadline: seminar class no. 5 (2016-03-17).
  2. Power distance in Romania. After acquiring the lecture information, the student should depict the occurrence of PD in Romania, by providing real life examples (may address family, school, organisations, central/local government etc.); each example should suggest either a large PD (attitude favourable to social inequalities), or a small one (attitude favourable to social equality). Deadline: seminar class no. 6 (2016-03-24).
  3. Individualism in Romania. After acquiring the lecture information, the student should depict the occurrence of Individualism in Romania, by providing real life examples (may address family, school, organisations, central/local government etc.); each example should suggest either a strong individualism (loose inter-human relationships), or a poor one (collectivism: strong inter-human relationships). Deadline: seminar class no. 7 (2016-03-31).
  4. Uncertainty avoidance in Romania. After acquiring the lecture information, the student should depict the occurrence of UA in Romania, by providing real life examples (may address family, school, organisations, central/local government etc.); each example should suggest either a strong UA (attitude unfavourable to what is different/foreign), or a low one (attitude favourable to what is different/foreign). Deadline: seminar class no. 8 (2016-04-07).
  5. Masculinity in Romania. After acquiring the lecture information, the student should depict the occurrence of Masculinity in Romania, by providing real life examples (may address family, school, organisations, central/local government etc.); each example should suggest either a strong masculinity (gender inequality, focus on money and power, appreciation for arrogance), or a poor one (femininity: gender equality, focus on harmony and the quality of life, appreciation for modesty, equalitarianism). Deadline: seminar class no. 9 (2016-04-21).

Class attendance

Class attendance (lecture and seminar, without distinction) is monitored, though it is not mandatory and it is not a condition for passing the exam. Class attendance has a certain influence on the final grade, through the application portfolio and the active involvement in discussion. Missing a class results in missing the corresponding small score.

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Teaching materials

Presentations (lectures)

Lecture presentations, in pdf files.
Chapter 1 is not required for the examination.

Worksheets (seminar)

Students are asked to download, print and have the following worksheets at the seminar.

Seminar Worksheets
1 (none)
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12

Audio-video

Problem solving: Best international practices

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Sample test questions

Pick a test: test 1 | test 2 | test 3 | final exam.

Test no. 1

Which one is NOT a cultural layer?

  • Beliefs.
  • Values.
  • Behaviours.
  • Industrial products.

Values tell people:

  • What is true or false.
  • What is good or bad.
  • Who are the best members of that society.
  • Which are the main strengths of that society.

Beliefs are:

  • Judgements that something is true or false.
  • Judgements that something is good or bad.
  • Religious considerations about the world.
  • Scientific considerations about the world.

Culture is specific to:

  • Individuals only.
  • Groups only.
  • Both individuals and groups.
  • None of them.

Hofstede’s model focuses:

  • Organisational cultures.
  • National cultures.
  • Corporate cultures.
  • Hofstede’s own cultures.

Power distance shows:

  • The number of subordinates of one manager.
  • The number of hierarchical levels of one company.
  • The number of managers of one subordinate.
  • The attitude towards social inequalities.

A masculine society is one where:

  • Men have more power than the women.
  • Women have more power than men.
  • Men and women have the same power.
  • There are no women.

What cluster does the Romanian culture belong to?

  • Russia, Greece, Turkey, Iran.
  • USA, Australia, Canada, United Kingdom.
  • France, Italy, Spain, Portugal.
  • Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland.

Test no. 2

Test no. 3

Final examination

Ch. 2. Cultural background of management

Ch. 3. Management in USA

Ch. 4. Management in Japan

Ch. 5. Management in Germany

Ch. 6. Management in France

Ch. 7. Management in United Kingdom

Multiple chapters

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Dissertation topics

The list below is only indicative.
Basically, any topic in management, business, economics, or culture, may be appropriate for a bachelor dissertation paper in this subject, provided it is subject to an international approach. This may include single-country studies, if the information they provide may serve as a basis for international comparisons.
The paper also has to be a practical research rather than a theoretical one. Usually, such a practical research is performed within one or many organizations; nevertheless, there may be studies unrelated to one certain organization, such as focusing a country, o branch/industry, a kind of organizations and so forth.
The elements below are ideas, not titles. The student may propose subjects that go beyond the course content, but are related to comparative management.
Therefore, some examples:

  • Management in a certain country [any one], as revealed in a certain organization.
  • Common features shared by management in a certain geographic area (group of countries, continent, region inside a country etc.).
  • Euromanagement [this is an illustration of the topic above].
  • Management in South-Eastern Europe [idem].
  • Assessing Romanian culture through Hofstede\’s cultural dimensions.
  • Assessing Romanian culture through GLOBE cultural dimensions.
  • Assessing Romanian culture through high vs. low context communication.
  • The study od a certain managerial component in one country (social protection, economic development, HRM, operations management, leadership, motivation, communication, marketing, organization design, decision making a.s.f.).
  • Contrasting management in two different countries (or regions, continents etc.).
  • Contrasting managers (or leaders) from two different countries.

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Readings

  1. Amatori, F. & Jones, G. (2003). Business history around the world. Cambridge University Press.
  2. Bamber, G. J. & Lansbury, R. D. & Wailes, N. (2004). International and comparative employment relations: Globalisation and the developed market economies (Fourth edition). Crows Nest, Australia: Allen & Unwin.
  3. Gesteland, R. R. (2002). Cross-cultural business behavior: negotiating, selling, sourcing and managing across cultures (4th edition). Copenhagen Business School Press.
  4. Hampden-Turner, C. M., & Trompenaars, F. (2000). Building cross-cultural competence: how to create wealth from conflicting values. New Haven & London: Yale University Press.
  5. Harris, P., & McDonald, F. (2004). European business and marketing (Second edition). SAGE Publications.
  6. Hofstede, G. (no year). http://geert-hofstede.com.
  7. Lawrence, P. & Edwards, V. (2000). Management in Western Europe. Palgrave MacMillan.
  8. Leung, K., & White, S. (2004). Handbook of Asian management. New York, Boston, Dordrecht, London, Moscow: Kluwer Academic Publishers.
  9. Reynolds, P. D. (2007). Entrepreneurship in the United States: the future is now. New York: Springer.
  10. Warner, M. (1997). Comparative management: critical perspectives on business and management. London and New York: Routledge.

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Grade statistics

MGE 3
year 10 9 8 7 6 5 ≤4
2015-2016 ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
2014-2015 6 4 2 3 4 5
2013-2014 10 4 2 3 2 0 0
2012-2013 14 5 2 2 2 1 0
2011-2012 8 3 5 7 3 1 0
2010-2011 8 3 2 2 3 6 0
2009-2010 15 4 4 6 2 2 0

Good luck!

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