Registration: Intercultural communication: Being successful in working together with people from different cultural backgrounds - all

Venue: FNO 01/135
Time: 10.00 - ca. 17.30 h (with 1 h lunchbreak)
Trainer: Verena Piper
Language: English
Participants: max. 12 persons
Credit Point: acknowledged with 0,75 CP for the doctoral training programme of RUB-RS Certificate


This workshop is particularly helpful for researchers who would like to raise their cultural awareness and develop their personal competencies when working together with people from different countries on campus or abroad.


After the course you will…

  • be able to detect intercultural miscommunication that challenge smooth work processes more easily
  • reflect on what cultural reasons might underlie your own behavior as well as the behavior of international colleagues (and your students)
  • have practiced intercultural communication strategies to find solutions for the occurring challenges and thus to handle intercultural situations in a culturally sensitive way


Workshop description

As a doctoral researcher you are constantly communicating with researchers from different cultural backgrounds.


International work groups have an enormous innovative potential and offer a great opportunity of tackling a research problem from different angles and including different points of view. The challenge is to use the potential of an international environment without being irritated by the challenges in communication which will arise if you are not aware of how culture shapes our communication, actions, behavior, expectations, and working style. Working together closely in a group with other researchers might seem easy, because you are used to meeting people from a lot of different cultural backgrounds at conferences and workshops. When it comes to working together on a daily basis, things look differently.


These challenges usually arise when communication is not working the way we expect, e.g. due to different communication styles or roles, which can result in misunderstandings and a loss of efficiency in your daily work. To unfold the positive potential of working in an international group and to gain long-term benefit it is necessary to reflect on these cultural expectations. Knowing the different meanings of behavior and being able to deal with differences in values and thinking is fundamental for successful outcomes when working in international research groups.


During the course of the training you will acquire strategies that help you deal with possible challenges that arise when working in an international work group. With reference to practical exercises by sharing personal experiences and looking at case studies you will learn how intercultural misunderstandings arise and how to improve your skills in handling situations in a culturally sensitive way. We will use a variety of methods to do so and the workshop setting will follow an interactive approach.



During this two-day workshop we will find answers to the following questions:

  • What is culture? How does culture influence our thinking, our communication and behavior?
  • What are the effects of stereotypes and cultural-based expectations in everyday life and at work?
  • To what extend do working styles differ across cultures?
  • What cultural dimensions describe similarities and differences among cultures? What does your individual cultural "profile" look like?
  • Strategies for dealing with miscommunication and conflicts
  • Cultural adjustment and change of identity: What happens when we are confronted with a new culture? How do you recognize that you are affected by "cultural stress" and what can you do about it?
  • Preparation for intercultural encounters: What can you do to prepare yourself for a stay abroad? What do you have to consider if you are in the role of a host? How can you create a welcoming atmosphere for visiting PhD students or Professors?


Verena Piper is an experienced trainer in intercultural communication, psychologist and mediator. She spent several years in Canada and Mexico and runs intercultural tranings in research institutions and companies.

Date: 25.–26.02.2019

Sorry, the registration period for this event is over.

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