At the time of this writing, he has not yet resigned. Mr. Silvio Berlusconi.

And even if he would or does, it will not make any difference to the Italian situation. The situation of (government) corruption, the general chaos in the country, and the overall debt Italy is currently in.

Why not?

From a practical standpoint, the reason is that there is very little “better” alternative. As a good Roman friend of mine once told me, when I asked him why (on earth) he voted for Berlusconi, his answer was quite frank and direct “it does not make a difference whom you vote for, all the other candidates are as corrupt as he is…“.From a cultural standpoint, we can explain this prediction using 2 dimensions of professor Geert Hofstede’s culture model: Power distance and Individualism.

First of all, power distance is closely linked to corruption in general. The yearly publication of the corruption perception index clearly shows a positive correlation between power distance and corruption. Italy has a score of around 50 on this dimension, versus for instance Sweden with a score of 30.

The second dimension involved here is Individualism. Now, most countries in the world that score high on power distance, score low on individualism (=collectivistic). There are a few exceptions, and Italy is one of them (score of around 71 on individualism; but… only in the North of the country. The south does indeed score collectivistic)

The consequence of the combination of a high score on power distance and a high score on individualism is that people (in general) will accept (not per sé respect) their boss (=government in this case), but in addition, hold a very strong personal agenda (=individualism). This means that when their boss (again the government) is paying attention, people will generally do what they need to do. But, if the government is not paying attention, people will let their own agenda prevail. Resulting in the current state of affairs in the country.

And since every Italian politician also has his own personal objective (usually getting rich fast), the future will remain bleak.

Culture Matters

What’s your opinion about this?


Get a Taste of How Chris Presents, Watch his TEDx Talk



5 + 1 =

call culture mattersCall Direct: +32476524957


whatsapp culture matters directlyEuropean Office (Paris) Whatsapp: +32476524957


The Americas (USA; Atlanta, GA; también en Español):  +1 678 301 8369

Book Chris Smit as a Speaker

If you're looking for an Engaging, Exciting, and Interactive speaker on the subject of Intercultural Management & Awareness you came to the right place.

Chris has spoken at hundreds of events and to thousands of people on the subject of Cultural Diversity & Cultural Competence.

This is What Others Say About Chris:

  • “Very Interactive and Engaging”
  • “In little time he knew how to get the audience inspired and connected to his story”
  • His ability to make large groups of participants quickly and adequately aware of the huge impact of cultural differences is excellent”
  • Chris is a dedicated and inspirational professional”

In addition, his presentations can cover specific topics cultural topics, or generally on Cultural differences.

Presentations can vary anywhere from 20 minutes to 2 hours and are given World Wide.

Book Chris now by simply sending an email. Click here to do so.

Read more about what Chris can do for you.

  • Percentage of People Rating a Presentation as Excellent 86% 86%
  • Rating the Presentation as Practical 89% 89%
  • Applicability of Chris' presentation 90% 90%

About Peter van der Lende

Peter van der Lende International business development

Peter has joined forces with Culture Matters.

Because he has years and years of international business development experience joining forces therefore only seemed logical.

Being born and raised in the Netherlands, he has lived in more than 9 countries of which most were in Latin America.

He currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia (USA) with his family.

You can find out more at

Or find out what Peter can do for you here.

Chris Smit
Latest posts by Chris Smit (see all)
We're looking for new Podcast Guests!

We're looking for new Podcast Guests!

If you think you or someone you know would make a good guest for our Culture Matters on International Business, drop us an email.

(make sure you or the person you know will be able to talk about International affairs!)

Thanks, we'll be back to you soon!