Strategic Management Review > Vol 4 > Issue 2

'Culture Eats Strategy for Breakfast': Use and Abuse of Culture in International Strategy Research

Stephen Tallman, E. Claiborne Robins Distinguished Professor, Robins School of Business, University of Richmond, USA, , Oded Shenkar, The Ohio State University, USA, , Jie Wu, Chair Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship, Business School, University of Aberdeen, King's College, UK,
Suggested Citation
Stephen Tallman, Oded Shenkar and Jie Wu (2023), "'Culture Eats Strategy for Breakfast': Use and Abuse of Culture in International Strategy Research", Strategic Management Review: Vol. 4: No. 2, pp 193-229.

Publication Date: 14 Jun 2023
© 2023 now Publishers, Inc.
Behavioral strategy,  Corporate strategy,  International strategy,  Strategy process and practice,  Strategic decision-making
Cultureinternational strategystrategic decisionmakingcultural distance


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In this article:
Context, Culture, and Strategy 
Constructs of Culture and Cultural Differences 
Empirical Studies of National Culture in International Strategy 


International strategy, as a subfield of strategic management, has too often settled for simplistic and rote approaches to bringing the international setting into the analysis of cross-border strategies and their consequences. We examine the application of national culture in international strategy research as perhaps the most common expression of locational awareness. We begin by considering the many critical assessments of current theoretical and empirical research on the culture--strategy interaction. We summarize multiple meta-analytic studies and examine a sample of empirical articles from the past 40 years more closely to offer our own criticism of the theories, settings, data, models, and variables used and the conclusions drawn by these scholars. We then go beyond critique to offer an extensive set of recommendations for future work that we believe can both correct the ever-clearer problems with extant research and offer innovative and more considered insights on the role of national culture in international strategy scholarship and practice.