Convergence – Divergence
The academic discussion on the effects of globalization has been dominated in the last decades by the controversy between the convergence and divergence thesis. However new developments on globalization theory put into question the fruitfulness of keeping on analysing this two thesis as an absolute dichotomy. As an example, Gupta and Wang (2003)* discuss two further possibilities (crossvergence and transvergence):
To bridge the differences between Convergence and Divergence schools, Ralston, Gustafson, Cheung, and Terpstra (1993) propose a middle ground using the term ‘crossvergence’ defined as a value set that was “in between” the values supported by the East and the West. Crossvergence suggests that the Asian organizations would develop a “hybrid” model blending the best elements of both their domestic and imported ideas (Abo, 1994).
While crossvergence offers a powerful perspective to integrate the twin forces of technological capability (associated with convergence) and cultural embeddedness (associated with divergence), it is not the only alternative. Sometimes the managers must integrate global models with their societal and organizational culture. In these situations, a distinct approach, that we term as ‘transvergence’, is needed. Transvergence may be defined as a formative change in the strategic modalities of an organization’s business through a creative reinterpretation and reapplication of indigenous culture and emergent market and technological opportunities (Gupta / Wang 2003: 69)
1. Discuss the extent to which a renewal of the divergence-convergence dispute becomes necessary against the backdrop of new developments on globalization theory (Globalization, McDonaldization, Glocalization, Grobalization).
2. On the basis of the result of the former discussion, examine the potential of alternative thesis like crossvergence and transvergence and what could be consequences for developing a new international management approach beyond the culture free culture bound opposition.
You don’t have to follow or answer these questions but it has to be along the line of cultural theories and comparing them.