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The Hofstede dimension is a model used to gain insight into different cultures in different countries and to distinguish the way business is conducted across these cultures (CFI, 2021). This model lists some categories that describe culture. Power distance is the degree to which less powerful individuals in a society assume that power is unequally distributed (Hofstede-Insights, 2021). This is based on the fact that members of a society are not equal, with some individuals endorsing a society’s inequality. Individualism is the measure of interdependence in a society. It is concerned with a “we” or “I” mentality. In some societies, people take care of themselves and their direct families while in others, there are groups that take care of each other. Masculinity measures what drives the society, is it focus on being the best or passion in what you do? A high masculinity means a society is driven by competition and success as opposed to quality of life. Uncertainty avoidance is the degree to which individuals in a society feel susceptible to unfamiliar situations thus creating beliefs to avoid them. It is a measure based on anxiety and how to deal with it.

Figure 1

Country Comparison Canada vs Nigeria

Figure 1 shows the comparison of Canada and Nigeria on the Hofstede dimension. On power distance, Canada scored 39 which means that their culture is defined by interdependence among individuals with minimal class categorizations. Canadian organizations hierarchy is aimed at convenience and teamwork. Nigeria on the other hand scored 80 which means that society accepts that every one has their place with no justification. Nigerian organization hierarchy values centralization and subordination. On individualism, Canada with a score of 80 can be classified as individualistic. This means that society is loosely-knit where people look after themselves and employees are self-reliant. Hiring and promotion is based purely on merit. Nigeria is classified as a collective society with a score of 30 on this dimension. This means strong ties in the society where everyone is responsible for their fellow society members. Hiring and promotions may be based on the individuals ties in the society. On masculinity, Canadians with a 52 score strive for high performance standards and value achievement and success. Nigeria is a more masculine society with higher levels of assertion, competition and conflict. On uncertainty avoidance, Canada scored 48. This means that Canadians are open to new ideas and opinions and value one’s right to expression. Nigeria does not have a definitive preference with a score of 55.

Each Hofstede category can influence corruption in one way or the other. Societies with a higher power distance have significantly less checks against power abuse. In such countries, authority is respected and centralized organization is normal, leading to an environment where corruption is likely to take place (Pillay & Dorasamy, 2010). Scandals in such places especially those concerning leaders are often covered up. Nigeria has a very high power distance score which makes all the above likely. On the other hand, Canada has a lower score, which means that leaders are held accountable and institutions are much more decentralized, leading to a lower probability for business corruption. Higher uncertainty avoidance means that the culture is defined by inhibited ambition, low labor turnover, reduced risk taking and a need for predictability. This results in dependence on regulations which can impair financial accountability. Moreover, these cultures are more likely to prefer well defined rules and regulations which may lower the chances of corruption. Nigeria scores slightly higher meaning that this dimension discourages corruption. On individualism, a collectivist culture is more obedient, conforming and loyal, which hinders whistle blowing and contributed to corruption. Officials in individualistic societies portray more discretion in action and thought, which may encourage corruption. Nigeria with a lower individualism score (30 vs 80) is more prone to corruption because the network created by strong societal ties encourages nepotism, favoritism and bribe taking. Culture with a high masculinity score value recognition, earnings, wealth and status, which enhances the probability of corruption, as is the case with Nigeria with a score of 60. In contrast, Canada with a lower masculinity score prefers conflict resolution and cooperation, with people being accountable for their actions, which discourages corruption (Pillay & Dorasamy, 2010).

The corruption perception index (CPI) is a measure that groups territories and countries according to their apparent public sector corruption levels based on input from business people and experts. The CPI uses a scale of 0-100, where 0 is the most corrupt. The CPI index in 2020 for the USA, Canada and Nigeria is 67, 77 and 25 respectively (Transparency International, 2021). At 77 CPI, Canada is less corrupt than the United States at 67 CPI, while Nigeria is more corrupt than the United States at 25 CPI. Canada and Nigeria both have a different CPI than the United States because they both have different cultures which results in different influences of the Hofstede dimension categories on how business is conducted in these 2 different cultures. This is in line with the earlier discussion on how each country’s score on the Hofstede dimension affects corruption. Nigeria has a higher score on power distance, masculinity and uncertainty avoidance which raises the probability of corruption.



CFI. (2021). Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions Theory – Overview and Categories. Corporate Finance Institute. Retrieved 16 July 2021, from

Hofstede-Insights. (2021). Country Comparison – Hofstede Insights. Hofstede Insights. Retrieved 16 July 2021, from,nigeria/.

Pillay, S., & Dorasamy, N. (2010). Linking cultural dimensions with the nature of corruption: An institutional theory perspective. International Journal Of Cross Cultural Management10(3), 363-378.

Transparency International. (2021). Afghanistan. Retrieved 16 July 2021, from