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Diversity Management in Higher Education Institutions: Key Motivators
Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School.
Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School.
Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Problem and Purpose – Diversity management, a subject of increasing interest over the last three decades in the business context, is even more relevant to higher education institutions, where diversity is present both in the supplier and customer side. In addition to general organisational improvements, most of the benefits arguably derived would have a direct impact on the cognitive processes such as problem-solving, creativity and learning, which are the core of the university reason for existence, being a centre for knowledge creation and transfer. However, the existing research covering diversity and its management in this particular organisational setting is very scarce. This paper aims to fill some of this gap. The purpose of this study is to identify the key motivators for ethnic diversity management in higher education institutions and the perceived benefits derived.

Method – The investigation took the form of in-depth structured interviews conducted through e-mail, policy document analysis and website reviews of four selected higher education institutions. Pattern matching (Yin, 1994) was employed as the mode for data analysis.

Findings – Ethnic Diversity Management was present in all units, however, it went beyond just the business case to include social justice view and other aspects. The HEIs studied were found to either manage diversity for purely ethical reasons, be motivated by a combination of moral considerations and perceived performance improvements, or completely culturally embrace diversity in the environment with less designated initiatives of diversity management, dependent on a range of variables present in each institutions related to their perceptions, goals and environment. Hence, both the social justice case and business case were concluded to be strong motivators for diversity management in the higher education context.

Originality/value – The paper highlights various DM initiatives, strategies as well as observed effects, hence solidifying the arguments for recognizing and managing diversity and the link between well managed diversity and performance in various aspects, both in business and higher education context. The study is expected to make a contribution  to knowledge by assisting in providing information on key motivators for DM in HEIs and is intended  to be  an elementary supplement  for scholarly discourse in management science, and particularly DM in the HEI context.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 95 p.
Keyword [en]
Diversity Management, Higher Education Institutions, Ethnic Diversity, Key Motivators, Diversity Benefits
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-15555OAI: diva2:426378
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2011-06-29 Created: 2011-06-23 Last updated: 2011-06-29Bibliographically approved

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