Bosnia’s Cultural Dimensions

blog post 6

Power Distance

Bosnia and Herzegovina is an unequal country which means their power distance is relatively high. Power distance typically corresponds with how developed the country is. Although there is no index to determine the power distance difference in Bosnia and Herzegovina, there is one for Yugoslavia who the country once belonged to. Ex-countries, Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia, have high power indexes. Serbia’s index reaches 86, followed by Croatia at 73, and Slovenia at 71. In a study conducted over 51 managers from all parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 52% of their employees agreed that they are afraid to express their disagreement with their boss. Along with that, managers believe that they should have higher salaries, privileges and status compared with subordinates. This secondary research suggests that there is a high power distance in Bosnia and Herzegovina (source).

Uncertainty Avoidance 

In a comparison between the dimensions of cultures between three countries, Bosnia and Herzegovina had the second highest uncertainty avoidance index with 28,66, Slovenia with 53,13, and Croatia with 22,95. Strong uncertainty avoidance in this country can be associated with communism regime legacy. This does confirm that there is a rather high uncertainty avoidance in Bosnia and Herzegovina (source).

Individualism vs Collectivism

Studies conducted by Hofstede over 50 countries suggest that the countries of former Yugoslavia are marked by collectivism. Another study conducted over Bosnian adolescents show that these adolescents have better quality of family interaction, lower aggression, greater parent influence, and lower self-esteem which means that Bosnia and Herzegovina may share the same features of a collectivist culture (source). Another interesting factor that plays into this is that it is expected that the children take care of their parents once they are old. Everything is done as a family group and while there is some individualistic culture in the country, a collectivism attitude dominates.

 Masculinity vs Femininity

Bosnia  would still be considered a more masculine dominated country than feminine, although women are starting to change this and are a driving force for change. Since Bosnia has a religious patriarchal tradition, women are sill expected to be submissive to men as they are expected to do housework and stay home to take care of the children while the men provide for their families and are the primary breadwinner(source).

Time-Orientation 

With the research I have already found over Bosnia and Herzegovina it is easy to say that in some cases, the country favors the past when it comes to religious tradition. And Bosnia and Herzegovina being religious-orientated when it comes to practically everything, most things carried out in society are done with the traditional mindset of whatever religion they belong to.

Indulgence vs Restraint

Although there is no data to confirm whether Bosnia and Herzegovina has high indulgence or high restraint, it can be argued that is has high restraint because the society is mostly governed by religion.

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