Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Over the past decade, several successful Canadian retailers have entered the United States market with mixed results. Until recently, the reasons for their success or failure had not been investigated.;This research project involved an examination of what accounted for the success or the failure of Canadian retail organizations, in the United States market, from a cultural perspective. It was designed to: (1) determine whether Canadian retail executives perceived any cultural difference to exist between Canada and the United States, and how this difference (if any) contributed to their success or failure in the U.S. market; (2) to examine the decision making processes within four Canadian retail companies who had entered the U.S., to identify factors contributing to their effectiveness or ineffectiveness; and (3) to measure cultural differences between Canadians and Americans via questionnaire. The objective of the research was to improve the effectiveness and success rate of Canadian retail companies entering the U.S. market.;Data collection consisted of two phases. In Phase 1, interviews were conducted with the top executive team members of four Canadian retailers who had entered the U.S. market, two successfully and two unsuccessfully. In addition, relevant presentations from two conferences dealing with the topic of Canadians doing business in the U.S. market were transcribed. Both within-case and across-case analyses were conducted to identify cultural differences as well as factors contributing to successful or unsuccessful decision making processes for entering and operating in the U.S. market. In Phase 2, a questionnaire measuring cultural differences was mailed to the top retail companies in Canada and the U.S. The data was analyzed to determine whether there were cultural differences between Canadians and Americans.;The results from Phase 1 indicated that executives perceived cultural differences to exist between the U.S. and Canada that affected their ability to do business in the U.S. market. Factors contributing to successful decision making processes for entering and operating in the U.S. market stressed the importance of the pre-entry orientation of the decision making team. The results from Phase 2 indicated that there were statistically significant cultural differences between Canadian and American Chief Executive Officers.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.