Mobility, Cultural Agility, & Cultural Humility


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About mathias sager

Independent researcher, artist, social entrepreneur, and leadership and strategy advisor I was born in Zurich in 1975 and grew up in Switzerland. The last six years I lived in Tokyo, and currently, I’m staying in Pune/India. I love open-minded people everywhere and the passion to working relentlessly for developing human potential, which is an overarching theme throughout all his work. I have extensive experience in leadership and management, organizational psychology research, and learning & development practice. I have worked as a teacher, a leadership trainer, as well as a senior manager responsible for client relationships, counseling, and virtual teams around the world. Also, I’m a social entrepreneur and serving as a strategy and leadership advisor in different ways. My goal is to inspire with interdisciplinary, innovative, and cross-cultural approaches to personal and professional development for the people’s individual well-being and common good alike. Continuously learning himself and keen to help, I appreciate any questions or feedback you may have at any time. Please connect here on any social media, as well as per direct email
  • Richard Keller says:

    Mathias, I’m interested in your thoughts on ‘cultural humility’ but there is no article, just the title.
    Richard Keller
    Wellington, New Zealand

    • mathias sager says:

      Dear Richard.
      Thank you for your question; appreciate it!
      I have cited a definition of cultural humility in the image of this post, but it’s indeed worth to elaborate a bit more.
      I think it is essential to see cultural humility as a complementary construct to cultural competency. As research is stating [1], humility may be a more active characteristic of one’s personality. In other words, only with cultural humility, one would have the “willingness” to apply his/her cultural competency. While competency is about knowledge, humility is about openness to learning and communication [2]. Therefore, humility is the quality that triggers and enables cross-cultural learning and competent cross-cultural behavior.
      To be culturally humble means to assume responsibility for diversity. Cultural humility requires (self-)reflection that is based on alertness, flexibility, and curiosity. In contrast, habitual prejudices and un-reflected routines are hindering factors for cultural learning and, therefore, are failing to be culturally humble [3].
      Hope that’s helpful.
      All the best!

      [1] Exploring the Relationship Between Honesty-Humility, the Big Five, and Liberal Values in Swedish Students. (2014). Europe’s Journal of Psychology, (1), 104.
      [2] LOUE, S. (2018). Using Sociodrama to Foster Cultural Humility among Faculty and Students in the Academic Medical Center. Romanian Journal for Multidimensional Education / Revista Romaneasca Pentru Educatie Multidimensionala, 10(2), 45–57.
      [3] Tschaepe, M. (2018). Cultural Humility and Dewey’s Pattern of Inquiry: Developing Good Attitudes and Overcoming Bad Habits. Contemporary Pragmatism, 15(1), 152–164. Retrieved from

  • Sadly, most of us have been taught that mobility is unidirectional – about climbing the ladder of today’s version of success, agility is relegated to the world of athletics (we have a lot of obsessive single-mindedness) and humility is merely a word in the dictionary.

    😎 Sorry to sound so negative, it’s just an observation. Hopefully more people will learn the wonderful things you are teaching and some will go on to teach others and compassion will come back into the mix in our way of formulating ideas and redesigning society.

    • mathias sager says:

      Your comment is, as always, invaluable and encouraging. We need to call things as they are, but I like your positive outlook. We need to believe in the possibility to increase the level of compassion, indeed. Thanks a lot and sending you lots of energy and thrive!