Non-nativeness in communication

Centre for Language Studies | Faculty of Arts | Radboud University Nijmegen


In 2001, Jos Hornikx graduated in International Business Communication Studies at Radboud University Nijmegen with a study on trust in new brands in advertising. In 2006, he defended his PhD on cultural differences in the persuasiveness of evidence types at Radboud University Nijmegen, and worked as a postdoc on a research project granted by the Niels Stensen Stichting at Northwestern University (USA). In 2007, Jos was affiliated with Utrecht University as a lecturer, and since that year he has been an Assistant Professor in Communication and Information Sciences at Radboud University Nijmegen until he was promoted to Associate Professor in 2013. In 2012, he was a visiting scholar at the School of Psychology at Cardiff University.


Jos Hornikx is interested in the broad field of persuasive effects research. The central question he addresses is what the persuasive consequences are of variations in language on the attitudes, behavioral intentions, and behavior of individuals. These language variations may consists of types of argument, culturally adapted appeals, or foreign language display. From a methodological perspective, his research mainly uses experimental designs, but he is also familiar with corpus research, and meta-analysis. Jos Hornikx has three core lines of research:

  1. Persuasive argumentation and the role of culture – he has conducted a number of studies on cultural differences in the persuasiveness of evidence types and evidence quality.
  2. Multilingual advertising – Advertising regularly contains foreign languages. In most cases, this language is English, but Jos focuses on other foreign languages because they are – in contrast to English – directly associated with a country and its characteristics. One question addressed is whether using a foreign language is more persuasive than using the target group’s own language, and whether the difficulty of the language matters.
  3. Cultural adaptation – With the current globalization, it is believed that communication should be adapted to the cultural background of the different target groups. Indeed, a meta-analysis shows that culturally adapted appeals in advertising are more persuasive than culturally unadapted appeals.

Argumentation, advertising, language, persuasion, foreign languages, international marketing

Key publications

Hornikx, J. (2011). Epistemic authority of professors and researchers: Differential perceptions by students from two cultural-educational systems. Social Psychology of Education, 14, 169-183.

Hornikx, J., & Haar, M. ter (2013). Evidence quality and persuasiveness: Germans are not sensitive to the quality of statistical evidence. Journal of Cognition and Culture, 13 (5), 483-501.

Hornikx, J., & Hahn, U. (2012). Reasoning and argumentation: Towards an integrated psychology of argumentation. Thinking and Reasoning, 18, 225-243.

Hornikx, J., & Hoeken, H. (2007). Cultural differences in the persuasiveness of evidence types and evidence quality. Communication Monographs, 74, 443-463.

Hornikx, J., Meurs, F. van, & Hof, R.-J. (2013). The effectiveness of foreign-language display in advertising for congruent versus incongruent products. Journal of International Consumer Marketing, 25 (3), 152-165.

Hornikx, J., & O’Keefe, D. J. (2011). Conducting research on international advertising: The roles of cultural knowledge and international research teams. Journal of Global Marketing, 24, 152-166.

Hornikx, J., & O’Keefe, D. J. (2009). Adapting consumer advertising appeals to cultural values: A meta-analytic review of effects on persuasiveness and ad liking. Communication Yearbook, 33, 38-71.

Other activities