Elite Network: Standards of Decision-Making Across Cultures

Standards of Decision-Making Across Cultures

“Standards of Deci­si­on-Mak­ing Across Cul­tures” (SDAC) is an inter­disci­plinary study pro­gram in cul­tural stud­ies with an em­phasis on East Asian socie­ties. It allows stu­dents to ac­quire pro­found aca­demic and meth­odo­logical knowledge, as well as addi­tional key skills re­garding de­cision-making pro­cesses in East Asia. This non-consecu­tive Elite Grad­uate Pro­gram draws from the fields of an­thropology, phi­loso­phy, politi­cal sci­ence, eco­nom­ics, histo­ry, and Chi­nese stud­ies.

The Elite Graduate Program at a glance

DegreeMaster of Arts
Duration of studyFour Semesters
Place of studyErlangen
Admission requirementsBachelor’s degree, master’s degree, diploma, Magister or state examination in a study that focusses on philology, social sciences, historical sciences, pedagogy, philosophy, religious studies, ethnology, economic sciences, law, psychology or medical science
Language of instructionEnglish
Application deadlineMarch 15th, July 15th
Apply now
Begin of studiesWinter semester
HeadProf. Dr. Michael Lackner 
CoordinatorAnna Schneider
Contact the coordinator
Further informationenWebsite Standards of Decision-Making Across Cultures

Decision-Making in an Intercultural Context

Students ac­quire valua­ble aca­demic and meth­odo­logical knowledge, as well as addi­tional key skills re­garding de­cision-making pro­cesses in East Asia and be­yond.Over the course of the degree pro­gram, stu­dents re­ceive insight into the pro­cesses of deci­si­on-mak­ing, e.g. in cultur­al, politi­cal, and entre­pre­neurial set­tings.


They devel­op a new cross-cultural per­spec­tive on deci­si­on-mak­ing pro­cesses, utilize their knowledge in an inter­disci­plinary con­text, learn to ap­proach re­search ques­tions from an aca­demic per­spec­tive and to culti­vate their inde­pen­dent think­ing.

These quali­ties even­tually enable them to devel­op inter­cultur­al sen­sitivi­ties and to facili­tate cross-cultural deci­si­on-mak­ing pro­cess­es.

Portrait photo: Prof. Dr. Michael Lackner

Insights into decision-making processes in different cultures are impossible without recognizing that they are grounded in different forms of rationality.

Prof. Dr. Michael Lackner

The ac­quired knowledge from the disci­plines of an­thropology, phi­loso­phy, politi­cal sci­ence, eco­nom­ics, histo­ry, and Chi­nese stud­ies will enable them to gain skills in the fields of com­muni­cation and critical think­ing, as well as to work in an inde­pen­dent, solu­tion-oriented, criti­cal, and analyt­ical man­ner in vari­ous pro­fes­sional cir­cum­stanc­es requir­ing exper­tise from hu­mani­ties, area stud­ies, and social sci­en­ces.

As a non-consecu­tive pro­gram, the SDAC opens per­spec­tives on both aca­demic and non-academic pro­fes­sions. For exam­ple, out­stand­ing stu­dents can re­ceive sup­port from facul­ty mem­bers to apply for the Ph.D. pro­gram in re­lated fields.

The prox­imity of our pro­gram to the IKGF offers a fa­vora­ble envi­ron­ment for aca­demic net­work­ing and re­search. De­pend­ing on their back­ground and inter­ests, stu­dents may also quali­fy for intern­ships and job posi­tions in a variety of fields related to their chosen orien­tation in the pro­gram. In partic­ular, they would be eligi­ble to work in an inter­na­tional envi­ron­ment where they could apply their inter­cultur­al sen­sitivi­ty, inter­disci­plinary aca­demic exper­tise, and com­muni­cation profi­cien­cy.

Study Abroad and Additional Activities

Students are re­quired to spend their third semes­ter at Bei­jing Uni­versity at the Euro­pean Centre for Chi­nese Stud­ies. As one of Chi­na’s most pres­tigious uni­versi­ties, Beijing University is home to a great variety of study sub­jects and re­search fields. This is re­flect­ed in the teach­ing pro­vided by the re­spec­tive insti­tutions on cam­pus.

Although most classes are not acces­sible to ex­change stu­dents, the ECCS will pre­pare a list of classes for every term. It will com­prise a variety of cours­es with differ­ent sub­jects (main­ly in Eng­lish and mainly from the fields of hu­mani­ties and social sci­ences) for stu­dents to choose from. Dur­ing their stay at the Euro­pean Centre for Chi­nese Stud­ies (ECCS) in Bei­jing, gradu­ates learn to apply their theo­retical knowledge from the first phase of the degree pro­gram to aca­demic and every­day situa­tions in Chi­na.

Snippets of the program

Rethinking decision-making

The workshop provided students with insights into the topic of decision-making. 

Read the report

The participants of the Workshop “Rethinking interdisciplinary approaches to decision-making” in the beautiful garden of the IKGF.

An Initiation into the “Art of Tea”

Participating students were treated to an exclusive, in-depth introduction to the Chinese “Art of Tea”.

Read the report

Students and teaching staff pose in front of the Department of Chinese, Beijing University.

Snippets of the research

Analysis of Chinese Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) entry modes and performance in the culturally diverse European Union market

This research analyzes Chinese FDI penetrating and performing in the EU with a special focus on German and UK markets.