Dutch Culture

Communication

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Verbal

  • Direct Communication: Dutch communication styles are frank and direct; they often speak the truth and arrive straight to the point without using as much tact as Australians to cushion their words. This approach can feel blunt and rude to a non-Dutch person, but directness is both appreciated and expected in their culture.
  • Language: The Dutch generally avoid using superlatives to describe things. Instead, they tend to tone down their compliments. For example, something that is great is “not bad”.
  • Humour: Dutch humour can be quite slapstick but is generally nuanced and subtle.


Non-Verbal

  • Personal Space: The Dutch tend to value their personal space a lot and do not appreciate it being invaded by others. They may have their furniture arranged in a way that puts more distance between people in a room. Avoid moving your chair closer if this is the case.
  • Physical Contact: The Dutch are generally less tactile and only tend to hug and touch people they know very well. That being said, it is more common for couples to display affection in public.
  • Body Language: Dutch people rely heavily on words and generally make less use of body language to emphasise a point in communication.
  • Punctuality: The Dutch are very punctual people and therefore view those who are late as unreliable.
  • Gestures: Putting your index finger to the temple of your head is considered an insult as it indicates that the person you are talking about is crazy.
The Netherlands
  • Population
    16,802,463
    0.23% of World Population
  • Languages
    Dutch (official)
  • Religions
    No Religion (42%)
    Catholic Christianity (28%)
    Protestant Christianity (19%)
    Other (11%)
  • Ethnicities
    Dutch (80.7%)
    Other European (5%)
    Indonesian (2.4%)
    Turkish (2.2%)
    Other (9.6%)
  • English Proficiency
    Well (70.58%)
  • Cultural Dimensions
    Power Distance 38
    Individualism 80
    Masculinity 14
    Uncertainty Avoidance 53
    Long Term Orientation 67
    Indulgence 68
    What's this?
  • Australians with Dutch Ancestry
    335,493
Dutch in Australia
  • Population
    76,047
  • Average Age
    64
  • Gender
    Male (50.9%)
    Female (49.1%%)
  • Religion
    Catholic Christianity (32.7%)
    No Religion (31.1%)
    Presbyterian and Reformed Christianity (9.2%)
    Other (21.5%)
  • Ancestry
    Dutch (89.3%)
    English (1.7%)
    German (1.6%)
    Other (5.7%)
  • Languages
    English (63.7%)
    Dutch (33.9%)
    German (0.3%)
    Other (1.2%)
  • English Proficiency
    Well (95.5%)
    Not Well (2.2%)
  • Diaspora
    Victoria (28.4%)
    New South Wales (24%)
    Queensland (19.7%)
    Western Australia (13.1%)
  • Arrival to Australia
    Prior to 2001 (87.2%)
    2001-2006 (4.5%)
    2007-2011 (5%)
Where do we get our statistics?
Country NL Flag