The cross-cultural business communication project or expoiting ICT to facilitate ICC

Mag. Neva Cebron (1), Mag. Reka Jablonkai (2), Ljerka Rados (3)
(1) Faculty of Humanities, University of Primorska, Slovenia,
(2) Department of English, Corvinus University of Budapest, Hungary,
(3) Faculty of Economics, University of Osijek, Gajev, Croatia, Croatia


The paper relates the experience gathered in the area of intercultural awareness raising with respect to methods and approaches used in the classroom and in terms of students’ response. The developments related were an integral part of an EU - Leonardo da Vinci Programme sponsored project in which learning of Business English has been carried out through an integrated skills approach in a series of virtual workshops. Within the CCBC project the teacher had to assume the role of a facilitator helping students to deal with cross-cultural issues while carrying out a simulated transaction in English. Virtual environment formed the backdrop for an international network of simulated companies, thus motivating the exchange of business messages and intercultural encounters. In the academic year 2003/04 almost 500 students, 18 teachers, 16 institutions from 10 different countries participated in the CCBC network.
In the first part, the article provides information on our approaches to intercultural issues, how the topic was tackled at earlier stages of the project and what lessons have been drawn from those attempts to teach ICC (Intercultural Communication Competence). The second part gives an account of improvements introduced at later stages of the project, listing specific tasks, approaches and teaching materials developed to facilitate certain aspects of ICC in an era of the Internet. The third part is concerned mainly with results of students’ work and their perception of own identity. Students benefit from the project since it gives them the opportunity to establish contacts with a number of peer groups from different countries and learn about different cultural communication patterns and possible misunderstandings.

Full text article

Generated from XML file


Byram, M. (1997) Teaching and Assessing Intercultural Communicative Competence. Clevendon: Multilingual Matters Ltd

Byram, M. and Grundy, P. ed. (2003) Context and Culture in Language Teaching and Learning. Clevendon: Multilingual Matters Ltd DOI:

Byram, M. and Fleming, M. ed. (1998) Language Learning in Intercultural perspective. CUP.

Carrithers, M. (1992) Why Humans Have Cultures: Explaining Anthropology and Social Diversity. Oxford: OUP.

Chamberlain, J.R. (2003) Getting started in Intercultural Communication Training. IATEFL SIGs Newsletter. Pp. 23- 27.

Fennes, H. and Hapogood, K. (1997) Intercultural Learning in the Classroom: Crossing Borders. London: Cassell.

Hofstede, G. (1980) Culture’s Consequences. Newbury Park, London, NewDelhi: Sage Publications

Hofstede, G. (1997) Culture and Organizations: Software of the Mind. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Kramsch, Claire (1998) Language and Culture. OUP.

McKay, S.L. (2002) Teaching English as an International Language. OUP.

Niemeier, S., Campbell, C.P., Dirven, R. (editors) (1998) The Cultural Context in Business Communication. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company. DOI:


Mag. Neva Cebron (Primary Contact)
Mag. Reka Jablonkai
Ljerka Rados
Author Biographies

Mag. Neva Cebron, Faculty of Humanities, University of Primorska

Mag. Neva Čebron started developing the ideas underlying the practices within the CCBC project together with mag. Inge Koch in 1999 and took over the task of coordinating the activities of this project from the very beginning. Her professional interests include translation, ESP, cognitive linguistics, comparative linguistics and ICC. In her research (master’s and doctoral thesis) she has been focusing on intercultural aspects of lexical semantics and translatability of core concepts between cultures. She has been teaching ESP at the tertiary level since 1991, first at the University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Maritime and Transport Studies, and more recently at the University of Primorska, Faculty of Humanities of Koper, Slovenia

Mag. Reka Jablonkai, Department of English, Corvinus University of Budapest

Mag. Reka Jablonkai is a university lecturer at Budapest University of Economic Sciences and Public Administration. She works at the Department of English. Her responsibilities at the department involve coordinating the undergraduate teacher training course, the postgraduate teacher training course and teaching and examining Business English. She also teaches at the course for Translators and Interpreters. She received her training in teaching Business English at the London Guildhall University. At the moment she is working on her PhD in Applied Linguistics and her interests include EU documents, EU vocabulary and course design, discourse analysis and corpus linguistics. She was a leader of a team of five teachers at the department working on a Hungarian-English Dictionary of Business and Economic terms. The book was published in April 2004. E-mail:

Ljerka Rados, Faculty of Economics, University of Osijek, Gajev, Croatia

Ljerka Rados, prof., Ljerka Rados, prof. is a senior lecturer at the Faculty of Economics in Osijek, Croatia and Head of the Foreign Languages Department. She has been teaching Business English since 1992. Before that, she worked as a translator for English and German at a major chemical company. For one academic year, she also taught English at the Faculty of Education in Osijek. She received the Certificate in Teaching English for Business by the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry Examinations Board (Pass with Distinction). Apart from translations and articles, she published the "English-Croatian Dictionary of Marketing Vocabulary" (19941, 20022) in co-authorship with Marcel Meler, professor of marketing. Her interests include different pedagogical issues referring to ESP, in particular working with large groups and writing. She is currently working on her MA. E-mail:

Cebron, M. N., Jablonkai, M. R., & Rados, L. (2005). The cross-cultural business communication project or expoiting ICT to facilitate ICC. Journal of Intercultural Communication, 5(2), 1–20.

Article Details

Smart Citations via scite_
  • Abstract 95
  • Download PDF 49