Cultural intelligence: Domain and assessment

David C. Thomas, Efrat Elron, Günter Stahl, Bjørn Z. Ekelund, Elizabeth C. Ravlin, Jean Luc Cerdin, Steven Poelmans, Richard Brislin, Andre Pekerti, Zeynep Aycan, Martha Maznevski, Kevin Au, Mila B. Lazarova

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The construct of cultural intelligence, recently introduced to the management literature, has enormous potential in helping to explain effectiveness in cross cultural interactions. However, at present, no generally accepted definition or operationalization of this nascent construct exists. In this article, we develop a conceptualization of cultural intelligence that addresses a number of important limitations of previous definitions. We present a concise definition of cultural intelligence as a system of interacting abilities, describe how these elements interact to produce culturally intelligent behavior, and then identify measurement implications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-143
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Cross Cultural Management
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Cross cultural management
  • Cross cultural skills
  • Cultural competence
  • Cultural intelligence
  • Cultural metacognition


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