ICEdge was born in 2002 at a conference hosted by the Center for International
Business Education (CIBER) at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.
The international scholars and practitioners who attended the event identified the need for a theoretically grounded and empirically validated instrument to assess culture-based communication styles and train intercultural communication awareness and effectiveness.
Three behavioral scientists — Wendi Adair
, Nancy Buchan
, and Xiaoping Chen
— integrated existing anthropological, psychological, communication, and management theory and research on the role of culture in communication. They gathered evidence that communication styles differ not only in terms of conversational directness/indirectness, but also in the degree to which communication is guided by a ention to multiple contextual factors including relationships, time, and space
Through collaboration with 14 Universities*, the research
team tested existing measures, developed and refined new
measures through multiple iterations, and validated the
ICEdge measure domestically and in both China (in
Mandarin) and Chile (in Spanish).
Since then, the ICEdge research team has developed a short
version of the instrument that was featured in the 2016
Academy of Management Discoveries article, “A model of
communication context and measure of context dependence.”
In their on-going research, the team has prioritized
three areas of inquiry: 1) understanding communication
style in different kinds of cultures, for example industry,
generations, and gender, 2) consequences for effective
communication when different forms of communication
style intersect in different work settings (e.g. knowledge
work, healthcare, finance), organizational cultures, families,
and close relationships, and 3) the impact of Intercultural
Communication Edge training and awareness on intercultural
competence developed on study-abroad, expatriate assignment,
and intercultural work.
Importantly, ICEdge is the first model that includes all four
elements of Hall’s communication and culture theory and
recognizes variation across the four elements. ICEdge is
also the first empirically validated tool that allows us to
explain and measure different distinct patterns of low and
high context communication behavior across message,
relationship, time, and space.
* The University of Colorado at Denver; University of Florida; Georgia Institute of Technology; University of Kansas; University of Memphis;
Michigan State University; Ohio State University; University of Pennsylvania; Purdue University; University of South Carolina; University of California,
Los Angeles; University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; University of Washington; and University of Wisconsin.
InterCultural Communication Edge (ICEdge) provides personalized assessments, expert advice, and training tools to support more effective communication across diverse demographics, cultures, and nationalities.