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The Kogut and Singh national cultural distance index: Time to start using it as a springboard rather than a crutch

Robbert Maseland (), Douglas Dow () and Piers Steel ()
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Robbert Maseland: University of Groningen
Douglas Dow: University of Melbourne
Piers Steel: University of Calgary

Journal of International Business Studies, 2018, vol. 49, issue 9, 1154-1166

Abstract: Abstract This Counterpoint investigates the continued relevance of the 30-year-old Kogut and Singh (KS) index of cultural distance. KS was a seminal contribution, highlighting the relevance of cultural differences in IB. However, since then, simplistic replications of the original arguments and index have prevented us from progressing towards a better understanding of how cross-national differences matter. We discuss the mechanisms underlying the construct and how they relate to the algorithm, data, and its critiques. We call for more theoretically informed approaches, highlighting the underlying mechanisms, and specifying which data and algorithms best capture those mechanisms in each research context.

Keywords: cultural distance; psychic distance; institutional distance; transaction cost theory; transaction cost economics or transaction cost analysis; institutional theory; internationalization theories and foreign market entry; new internalization theory (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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