The Khus Project: Cultural Conflict
(6 pages of text)
Case (Gen Exp)
As one of its first international projects, the China Guangxi Corporation for International Techno-Economic Cooperation (GCITEC) began a joint venture initiative with a local Pakistani firm in September 2015. The joint venture centred around constructing a canal in the Khus area of northern Pakistan. The Chinese firm brought funding and technical experience; the Pakistani partner brought local experience and local construction staff. After working together for several months, significant problems began to emerge between the two sides. These tensions resulted from differing management cultures and institutional differences between the Pakistani and the Chinese business environments. The president of GCITEC's Pakistani branch was faced with a choice: find a way to renew the partnership and fix both the immediate personnel conflict and its underlying factors, or, if the conflict was beyond reconciliation, dissolve the joint partnership and bear the cost of this choice.
This case can be used in undergraduate-, graduate-, or executive-level courses in international business, strategic management, and human resources management.
Working through the case will give students the opportunity to do the following:
- Consider the ways in which a country’s context can affect international joint ventures.
- Examine how differences in institutional contexts can shape the way firms operate, both in their home country and in host countries.
- Gain an understanding of how leaders think systematically about the decisions that confront them.
Pakistan; China, Large, 2015
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