A Study of Cultural Differences on English Versions of Corporate Websites: A Corpus-based Approach
Evgeny Kiselev（Kobe Pharmaceutical University）
The goal of this study is to evaluate linguistic features that may account for cultural differences between Japanese and Russian corporate websites with the English language used as a lingua franca. The methodology used in the study is a corpus-assisted discourse analysis of the texts retrieved from each corporate website. Multiple companies from the transport, finance, telecommunications, IT, and energy industries were chosen as subjects for the analysis given the similarities of their roles in their respective economy. Twelve Japanese and twelve Russian companies were selected and self-introductory texts（i.e., “About”, “History”, “Vision”, “Message from Management” etc.）were analysed based on the semantic fields. First, findings reveal noticeable differences in the kind of information provided and the linguistic features used. Second, a number of discrepancies can be explained with reference to Hofstedeʼs（2010）cultural model. The study illustrates that corpus-assisted research can contribute considerably to business communication studies, by exploring linguistic markers that could be associated with cultural dimensions and by illustrating the way they can influence communication on the English versions of corporate websites.