Business communication across three European cultures: A contrastive analysis of British, Spanish and Polish email writing

Autores UPV
Revista Ibérica


Today the most international written mode of communication within the business world is electronic correspondence. Diverse analyses of emails written in different cultures have been carried out revealing interesting differences and similarities in their discourse features and rhetorical strategies. However, a comparative examination of business emails from representative European cultures such as British (Northern Europe), Spanish (Southern Europe) and Polish (Eastern Europe) has not been undertaken so far. With this aim a large corpus of emails of response to business requests written in English by companies set up in these three cultures has been compiled and analysed. The main research targets are to observe the main parameters of variation across these cultures, the existent variation regarding the prototypical move structure and how register variation fluctuates depending on each culture. The results will indicate that across these cultures the move structure of this genre is more complex than current templates and existing publish materials show. The study also demonstrates that, while there is a tendency to standardize email correspondence at European level, there are certain parameters of variation that may help business learners and users to adequate their messages depending on the recipient¿s culture.