The purpose of this study is to understand how the concept of diversity management is translated and adapted into the Danish societal context. The authors therefore seek to answer these questions: to what extent do larger Danish companies experience a need to practice diversity management? Do they also have specific diversity policies? And how do these Danish companies discursively construct and manage diversity?
The authors surveyed 100 Danish firms and performed a discourse analysis of two frontrunner firms' diversity documents.
The Danish firms in the survey experienced a need for diversity management, but were somewhat reluctant to introduce diversity policies. The two frontrunner firms drew on a discourse of diversity as a business case intertwined with a discourse of social responsibility with focus on helping minority groups having difficulties accessing the job market. The findings indicate that concepts must be translated for the local context in order to be accepted by local actors.
Further studies should look closer into local practices of diversity management to increase understanding of how this seemingly universal management concept is translated.
Danish society, which until recently was relatively homogeneous, forms a specific cultural context for diversity management that differs significantly from American and British multicultural societies.
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