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    Riefler, Petra 2017. Cross Cultural Issues in Consumer Science and Consumer Psychology. p. 89.

    Laughlin, Charles D. 2017. Conceptual Systems Theory: A Neglected Perspective for the Anthropology of Consciousness. Anthropology of Consciousness, Vol. 28, Issue. 1, p. 31.

    Wilson, Jessie Ward, Colleen Fetvadjiev, Velichko H. and Bethel, Alicia 2017. Measuring Cultural Competencies: The Development and Validation of a Revised Measure of Sociocultural Adaptation. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, Vol. 48, Issue. 10, p. 1475.

    Van de Vliert, Evert Janssen, Onne and Van der Vegt, Gerben S. 2016. Hard or Easy? Difficulty of Entrepreneurial Startups in 107 Climato-Economic Environments. Applied Psychology, Vol. 65, Issue. 3, p. 469.

    Van de Vliert, Evert Einarsen, Ståle and Nielsen, Morten Birkeland 2013. Are national levels of employee harassment cultural covariations of climato-economic conditions?. Work & Stress, Vol. 27, Issue. 1, p. 106.

    Laughlin, Charles D. 2013. Consciousness and the Commons: A Cultural Neurophenomenology of Mind States, Landscapes, and Common Property. Time and Mind, Vol. 6, Issue. 3, p. 287.

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    Lonner, Walter J. 2011. Editorial Introduction and Commentary. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, Vol. 42, Issue. 8, p. 1303.

  • Print publication year: 2011
  • Online publication date: June 2012

4 - The ecocultural framework: a stocktaking


This chapter addresses one of the main issues in cross-cultural psychology, and of this book: how can we conceptualise and empirically investigate the relationships between culture and human behaviour? This question assumes that culture and behaviour are distinguishable phenomena, each with a separate existence at its own level; this issue is addressed in this chapter. There is an even more fundamental level, that of the ecological context within which both culture and behaviour are situated and in which they develop. This level will also be addressed, by outlining ecology–culture–behaviour relationships within an ecocultural framework.

The ecological approach to understanding any phenomenon is to examine it in context. These contexts can be naturally occurring or human-made. Essential to this approach are the concepts of interaction and adaptation. Interaction implies reciprocal relationships among elements in an ecosystem; adaptation implies changes in these elements that increase their mutual fit or compatibility. These ideas have a long history in the natural sciences, but have only recently become part of the social and behavioural sciences. Of course, the common criticism of the human sciences following epistemological models from the natural sciences applies here: To what extent can we understand human phenomena using models based on non-human science? No convincing arguments to justify this way of understanding human beings are advanced here.

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Fundamental Questions in Cross-Cultural Psychology
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