Transcultural Competence

Introducing our latest research initiative!

Our new LEIZ-research initiative ‘Transcultural Competence’ analyses the constitutive elements and preconditions of successful global cooperation.


In times of globalisation, the creation of economic and social value literally crosses borders. In terms of the determinants of successful global cooperation, particularly concerning the involved cultural challenges, manifold questions arise: Which characteristics distinguish a transculturally competent person? What does it mean if an organisation pursues a transcultural approach when developing its global strategy? And which learning processes enable and strengthen transculturality? These are some of the topics that a research group which was recently established at LEIZ focuses on.

Composed of LEIZ director Josef Wieland, LEIZ researcher Julika Baumann Montecinos and the three doctoral candidates Jessica Geraldo Schwengber, Tobias Grünfelder and Antonin Salice-Stephan, the group analyses the constitutive elements and preconditions of successful global cooperation. Through the lens of the theory of relational economics, this entails not only questions about the willingness and ability to cooperate in a complex network of cross-cultural relations, but also about organizational governance structures that anticipate such a network’s ongoing dynamics. When analysing transcultural competence in this manner, the description of learning processes on both the individual and the organizational level addresses two sides of the same coin and underlines the ambition to elaborate on a comprehensive concept of transcultural leadership and its implications for theory and practice.

Following this purpose, various contributions and formats have been identified to pursue the research group’s goals: next to the fundamental research on the nature as well as the building blocks of transcultural competence as a conceptual concretion of relational economics, the exchange with other researchers in the field, an expert conference to be held at Zeppelin University in 2020, as well as case studies with globally-acting cooperation partners from business and civil society, to name but a few of the envisaged activities, aim to create a platform for academic and cross-sectoral dialogue that nurtures the process of establishing a substantiated understanding of what it means to shape global cooperation with a transcultural approach.

The Transcultural Caravan is initiated and executed by


The LEIZ is kindly sponsored by


»There can be no culture except where there is some consensus. Consensus is a matter of understanding. It is transmitted through communication, through example and through participation in a common life.«

Robert Ezra Park, est. early 1920s