Economics & Sociology

ISSN: 2071-789X eISSN: 2306-3459 DOI: 10.14254/2071-789X
Index PUBMS: f5512f57-a601-11e7-8f0e-080027f4daa0
Article information
Title: Culture and Plane Crashes: A Cross-Country Test of The Gladwell Hypothesis
Issue: Vol. 10, No 3, 2017
Published date: 10-2017 (print) / 10-2017 (online)
Journal: Economics & Sociology
ISSN: 2071-789X, eISSN: 2306-3459
Authors: Carl E. Enomoto
New Mexico State University

Karl R. Geisler
New Mexico State University
Keywords: plane accidents, culture, power distance, miscommunication
DOI: 10.14254/2071-789X.2017/10-3/20
Index PUBMS: 80d5ecec-f8f3-11e7-94c4-fa163e5d4f72
Language: English
Pages: 281-293 (13)
JEL classification: Z10, Z13

Early studies found evidence of a positive correlation between Hofstede’s power distance scores, which measure the extent to which those without power defer to those with it, and plane accidents in different countries. However, these studies did not control for the level of economic activity (Gross Domestic Product-GDP) and severe weather conditions in these countries. This paper uses regression analysis to estimate the effects of number of flights, GDP, severe weather conditions, and culture on plane crashes in sixty eight countries. It is found that per-capita GDP and country scores on the cultural dimension of individualism are inversely related to plane accidents while power distance scores and number of flights are directly related to plane accidents. Continued training for pilots and copilots in direct cockpit communication can help overcome cultural barriers and reduce plane accidents.


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