Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Reference Resources for Cultural Information
These sources contain reference books that can be accessed online (examples in boxes below).
SAGE Reference Online
Several useful reference sources on regional perspectives, family roles in different cultures, business considerations by culture, and more
*See examples below
Gale Virtual Reference Library
Encyclopedias on modern-day cultures in Asia, Middle East, Africa, as well as information on food and arts by culture (see examples below)
*Useful categories to select in Gale: History, General, Business
Gale Virtual Reference Library Examples
Sage Reference Online examples
Databases with Culture and Customs Information
The databases below provide detailed information on customs and cultures of other countries.
GREAT source for quick information on cultures and customs of different countries
"People" section--population, language, religion, and more
"Lifestyle" section--family, housing, diet, arts, and much more
"Society" section--transportation & communications, education, and health
Fitch Connect (previously Business Monitor)
Political and legal systems found in country's Business Environment reports
Countries and Their Cultures
Information includes demography, linguistics, food, social stratification, and much more.
The World Factbook (CIA)
Great for cultural statistics but does not provide much analysis
BBC Country Profiles
Search by country or territory
*Instant guide to history and political leaders
*Specialized Media tab covers the use and sources of media available
Wide range of statistics including consumer behavior, markets, industries, countries and trend forecasts.
(Note: always have to select "Accept" on first screen)
Unique consumer data provided covering many aspects of consumer lifestyles, particularly requirements under "Living Conditions"
Dashboards-->Country Overviews under Vis Apps provides quick, useful info on Business Environment, Key Economic Indicators, and Social & Cultural Factors
"Consumer Segmentation" is useful for population distribution
Search Don't overlook this useful function because it allows you to select many components needed for your notebook
Mintel Reports Database
Basic country custom and culture information in the Travel & Tourism Country Reports by country.
Select a country in the COUNTRY PROFILE box on the right side of the home screen
--Results in a PDF Country Profile report
Contains info on Political and Legal systems, as well as religion
Arguably the best free online resource for global business information developed and hosted by Michigan State University.
TIP: Select a country and the "Resources" in the left column for links to that country's government resources--great for statistics, labor regulations, costs, etc.
Books at USC
There is a lengthy series of "Culture and Customs" books in print at Thomas Cooper Library. See the catalog listing for your region.