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Understanding the Chinese information culture and its impact on IT perceptions

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Drawing upon the theory of information culture from information science and prior research on Chinese information practices. The purpose of this paper is to posit that instead of over-relying on Hofstede’s national cultural values, the IS field should develop theories on national information culture to bridge the theoretical gaps found in explaining the differences in individuals’ IT perceptions and behaviors across cultures.


To achieve the objectives of this study, two quantitative studies were conducted. The first study is exploratory in nature and focuses on the development and calibration of an instrument to measure the Chinese information culture (CIC). The second study takes a confirmatory approach to investigate the impact of the CIC on IT perceptions of manager.


The study develops and validates an instrument for measuring the CIC that comprises information source and format preference, information ownership and analysis style, and centralized decision-making and information control. The CIC is found to influence IT perceptions of managers including perceived performance improvement resulted from IT use, attitude toward using work technologies and attitude on the value of IT in general.


This study is one of the first studies to theorize national information culture to understand IT perceptions at the individual level. The development of the CIC measure provides the much needed methodological support for contextualizing cross-cultural research.
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Keywords: Cross-cultural issues; Culture; IT/IS management; Individual; Perception

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Management, HR and Information Systems Area, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, California, USA 2: Rotam-Reddy Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd, Beijing, China 3: Sense Time Research, Beijing, China

Publication date: April 8, 2019

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