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Dragana Martinovic



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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


The dynamism of politically and socially transparent geographical borders has created new opportunities for businesses, cultural interactions, and learning. Since Earley and Ang (2003) first presented the concept of cultural intelligence (CQ)—a construct referring to human ability to adapt, operate, and administrate effectively in culturally varied situations and settings—substantial research has been conducted regarding this subject. Consequently, CQ has been rapidly gaining popularity as a construct to help predict and clarify one’s effectiveness and performance in cross-cultural surroundings. The tourism industry is a valuable illustration of a cross-cultural setting because a great deal of it is based on interactions among people from different cultures. However, most research has focused on tourism development and its impacts on economy and social development, leaving aside its potential cognitive effects on individuals involved in cross-cultural interactions within tourism. Hence, there is still a gap in understanding the tourism professionals’ CQ and the possible implications for education. After all, the Cultural Drive Hypothesis indicates that there is a coevolution of social skills and the brain; thus, social learning outcomes and cultural traditions create more efficient social learning skills and consequently promote the brain’s development (Markov & Markov, 2020). Therefore, the present study aims to determine the impact of cross-cultural interactions on tourism workers’ CQ level, in a tourist township in Brazil. The study also investigates the tourism workers’ perceptions of the cultural hierarchy and cultural adaptation process and their impact on local communities. This exploratory case study employed a mixed-method approach. The research used a survey, the Cultural Intelligence Scale (CQS) (Ang et al., 2007), and open-ended interviews as data collection tools. The population included three types of businesses from Canasvieiras township. The key findings consist of: (1) validation of CQS in a Brazilian context; v (2)identification of cultural intelligence level and cultural hierarchy perception of touristworkers who did not necessarily live abroad; (3) proposition of educational procedures to increase tourist workers’ cultural intelligence and potentially international tourists’ satisfaction; (4)description of individual’s perception of cultural intelligence and cultural hierarchy; and (5)directions for future research in this area.

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