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Relational Models and Horizontal & Vertical Individualism-Collectivism:
Unformatted Document Text:  Relational Models 5 and Denmark (18) are lowest. The United States (40) are slightly below to the mean on power distance (M = 51), whereas Singapore scored close to the top (74). Four Types of Cultures Combining the two dimensions of individualism and collectivism with vertical and horizontal relationship orientations leads researchers to distinguish between four different types of culture (Singelis et al, 1995; Triandis, 1995; Triandis & Gelfand, 1998): horizontal individualism (HI), vertical individualism (VI), horizontal collectivism (HC), and vertical collectivism (VC). According to Singelis et al. (1995) and Triandis and Gelfand (1998), in HI cultures persons want to be unique and independent but they are not particularly interested in being distinguished from others and do not seek higher status. Persons in VI cultures, on the other hand, want to be distinguished from others and are seeking higher status through competition. In HC cultures equality, interdependence and sociability are important and persons see themselves as part of an egalitarian in-group. In contrast, persons in VC cultures also see themselves as members of an in-group, however, they see hierarchical differences among group members, and status inequality is expected. Of course, these cultural types not only describe different cultures, but sub-cultures as well. In their study of collectivism within the United States, for example, Singelis et al. (1995) found that vertical collectivism is seen more often among Asian Americans than European Americans. Culture and Interpersonal Relationships Although culture is defined on a societal level as shared norms and values of groups of people, culture necessarily also exists on an individual level. That is, culture is reflected in the attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors of the individuals within a group of persons of similar

Authors: Koerner, Ascan.
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Relational Models
5
and Denmark (18) are lowest. The United States (40) are slightly below to the mean on
power distance (M = 51), whereas Singapore scored close to the top (74).
Four Types of Cultures
Combining the two dimensions of individualism and collectivism with vertical and
horizontal relationship orientations leads researchers to distinguish between four different
types of culture (Singelis et al, 1995; Triandis, 1995; Triandis & Gelfand, 1998): horizontal
individualism (HI), vertical individualism (VI), horizontal collectivism (HC), and vertical
collectivism (VC). According to Singelis et al. (1995) and Triandis and Gelfand (1998), in
HI cultures persons want to be unique and independent but they are not particularly
interested in being distinguished from others and do not seek higher status. Persons in VI
cultures, on the other hand, want to be distinguished from others and are seeking higher
status through competition. In HC cultures equality, interdependence and sociability are
important and persons see themselves as part of an egalitarian in-group. In contrast, persons
in VC cultures also see themselves as members of an in-group, however, they see
hierarchical differences among group members, and status inequality is expected. Of
course, these cultural types not only describe different cultures, but sub-cultures as well. In
their study of collectivism within the United States, for example, Singelis et al. (1995)
found that vertical collectivism is seen more often among Asian Americans than European
Americans.
Culture and Interpersonal Relationships
Although culture is defined on a societal level as shared norms and values of groups of
people, culture necessarily also exists on an individual level. That is, culture is reflected in
the attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors of the individuals within a group of persons of similar


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