Cross cultural sensitivity

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Cross cultural sensitivity is the knowledge, awareness, and acceptance of other cultures.


Support of cultural sensitivity is based on ideological or practical considerations.

Former Secretary-General of the United Nations Kofi Annan advocates cultural sensitivity as an essential value in the modern world:

Tolerance, inter-cultural dialogue and respect for diversity are more essential than ever in a world where people are becoming more and more closely interconnected.Kofi Annan, Former Secretary-General of the United Nations

— [1]

Cross cultural sensitivity can impact the operating income of corporations seeking to expand their activities to foreign markets. An US manufacturer of golf balls packaging balls in packs of four and failed to in Japan, where that number means death.[2]

Cultural sensitivity can increase the security of travellers. Lacking awareness of foreign cultures can have adverse legal consequences.[3]

Cultural sensitivity can have positive effects in academia. In 2002 Unity College, Murray Bridge, began a Student Exchange Program with Chuo University Suginami High School in Tokyo, Japan. This program has been successful because of the both schools' focus on cross cultural awareness [4]

Cultural sensitivity training in health care providers can improve the satisfaction and health outcomes of patients from different minority groups [5]


Cultural sensitivity may lead to acceptance of genital mutilation. According to a child protection expert of the University of South Australia, Professor Freda Briggs, culturally-sensitive doctors perform genital mutilation on refugee children in Australia.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ United Nations. Retrieved on 2009-04-06
  2. ^ Kwintessential. Retrieved 2009-04-06
  3. ^
  4. ^ Unity College. Retrieved 2009-04-06
  5. ^ "THE IMPORTANCE OF CULTURAL COMPETENCE IN HEALTHCARE". Cultural Candor Inc. Retrieved 25 November 2015. 
  6. ^