Comparison of US and Russian Culture

Comparisonof US and Russian Culture

Comparisonof US and Russian Culture

Theglobal society is characterized by cultural diversity that isparticularly notable across regions and nationalities. A comparisonof the culture of the United States and Russia evidences these formsof differences. Geert Hofstede model provides one of the interestingapproaches to conceptualizing cultural dissimilarities acrossnationalities. The Hofstede’s model approaches cultural attributesbased on six dimensions, which include power distance, individualism,masculinity, uncertainty avoidance, long-term orientation, andindulgence. The dimensions are assigned scores ranging between 0 and100, depending on the cultural attributes of the nationality offocus. The aim of this paper is to compare the United States andRussia based on the Geert Hofstede’s dimensions.

ACross-Comparison of the US and Russia based on Hofstede’sDimensions

Thetable below summarizes the cultural differences between the UnitedStates and Russia based on the Geert Hofstede’s model (Hofstede,2011).


Power Distance



Uncertainty avoidance

Long-term orientation

















Powerdistance can be defined as the general tolerance to authorityinequalities. As can be inferred from the table, Russia has a scoreof 93, while the US has a score of 40. The Russia’s high powerdistance score essentially implies that its society, especially theless powerful members of the institutions and organizations acrossthe country are likely to accept the power inequities. Such ascenario contrasts with the case of the US, in which the lesspowerful members is less tolerant to differences in inequalities. Themembers of the US society place much emphasis on the need for powerto be distributed equally.


Individualismdescribes the extent which members exhibit the general tendency to beindependent from the rest of the society. As illustrated in the tableabove, US has a score of 91, while Russia has only 39. In thisregard, the United States is much more individualistic than Russia.Typically, in contrast with Russians, the people in the US would wantto do things without anticipating approval from the rest of thesociety. For the US, the individual goals come first. For Russia,community or family values come first.


Themasculinity dimension describes the tendency to tolerate competitionand allow the winner ‘to take it all,` without caring position ofother members of the society. The Hofstede’s table shows the US hasa relatively high score of 62, compared to Russia’s score of 36.This means that the members of the US are highly masculine comparedto the Russians. In a typical scenario, the Russian citizens arelikely to care about the welfare of other members of the society andconsidering them in the decisions they make. In contrast with the US,competition does not always matter.


Uncertaintyavoidance can be defined as the tendency to avoid risks or the futurethat cannot be predicted. The Hofstede’s uncertainty avoidancescore for the USA is 46 while that of Russia is 95. Therefore, it canbe inferred that Russians have a high tendency to avoiduncertainties, compared to the members in the US. In other words, themembers of the United States are more outgoing in taking risks thatthe Russians will do.


Long-termorientation defines the tendency of a society to maintain connectionsto its past while facing the current and future issues. The data fromthe table reveals that the US registers the score of 26, compared toRussia that has a high score of 81. Based on these differences inscore outcomes, Russians can be said to be highly long-term oriented,contrasting with case of the US members, who can be ascribed as theshort-term oriented. One of the areas in which this difference playsout is the dynamism — the US is much more dynamic than Russia.


Indulgencecan be defined as the degree to which individuals are likely tocontrol their desires and whims. The indulgence score for the US is68, while Russia is 20. This difference implies that the US ishighly indulgent, while Russia is restrained. For example, the US ismuch more likely to indulge in war, innovations, and new technologiesthan Russia.


Inconclusion, the aim of this paper has been to compare the UnitedStates and Russia based on the Geert Hofstede’s dimensions, whichinclude power distance, individualism, masculinity, uncertaintyavoidance, long-term orientation, and indulgence. Russia has a hightolerance for power distance, high uncertainty avoidance, and highlylong-term orientated compared to the US. In contrast, the US ishighly individualistic, masculine, and indulgent than Russia. In thisregard, any person interacting with these two cultures need to beaware of the inherent differences to avoid cultural misunderstanding.


Hofstede,G. (2011). Culture`s Consequences: comparing values, behaviors,institutions, and organizations across nations (2nd ed.). ThousandOaks,