Managing cultural diversity

Times of “globalization” bring a considerably high amount of migration – a fact that, in turn, causes an increasing degree of such cultural diversity. Since literally every individual in his or her life is likely to somehow depend upon medical care, the challenge of cultural diversity and intercultural understanding is a substantial issue for maintaining stability on the individual and societal level. Focusing especially on the interpersonal relationship and the face-to-face dialogue between physician and patient, this paper provides means for improving mutual understanding and patients’ compliance. It is based upon the methodological-hermeneutical concept of Intercultural Philosophy. According to this this point of view, e.g. a robot can never adequately take care of a patient, because for convalescence it is crucial to consider emotional, social and psychological aspects. In the tradition of the IFAC Committee Social Impact of Automation the paper points beyond the wide use of technolPatienogy in medicine today. It, thus, opens a starting point for a constructive interdisciplinary discourse between philosophy, medical ethics and the engineering community about whether technology-based medical treatment is a barrier to ethical behavior and a threat to stability – especially in intercultural environments. PDF icon ex