2023-01Thematic Section
Undertaking Empirically-Engaged African Philosophy: The Development and Validation of the African Time Inventory


Cross-cultural conflict is often rooted in variation between values from different cultures, for example, differences in time orientation. Usually, individuals are monochronic or polychronic regarding time orientation. In South Africa, the term African time represents a nuanced polychronic time orientation. As this term is often used pejoratively, it is cardinal to break down stigmatization and create cultural awareness regarding this unique time orientation. In this paper, we argue that people must be cognizant of particular time orientations to facilitate intercultural dialogue better and lessen conflict. With this in mind, we employed empirically-engaged African philosophy and developed the African Time Inventory (ATI). We theoretically introduce African time as a unique time orientation during the scale development process. The psychometric properties of the ATI are presented and proved to be reliable and valid in South Africa. In praxis, utilizing the ATI can facilitate decolonization resulting from some needed cultural awareness for dialogue and conflict mitigation.


African time, African Time Inventory, cultural awareness, polychronism, time orientation, intercultural communication, African philosophy, experimental philosophy

How to cite:

Terblanché-Greeff, Aïda C., and Petrus Nel. “Undertaking Empirically-Engaged African Philosophy: The Development and Validation of the African Time Inventory.” Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 7, no. 1 (2023):  47-64. https://doi.org/10.14394/eidos.jpc.2023.0004.


Aïda C. Terblanché-Greeff
Department of Philosophy, University of Johannesburg
Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa

Petrus Nel
Department of Industrial Psychology and People Management, University of Johannesburg
PO Box 524, Auckland Park 2006, South Africa


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