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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2009, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Global Diversity Management: An Evidence-based Approach
Article Type: Suggested reading From: Human Resource Management International Digest, Volume 17, Issue 7
Mustafa Ozbilgin and Ahu TatliPalgrave Macmillan, 2008
Through the concept of global diversity management, Ozbiligin and Tatli offer an insight into the study and practice of equality and diversity management that will appeal to both the needs of diversity specialists and the interests of academics.
The authors present diversity management as both multi-tiered and interrelated at the global, national, sectoral and organizational levels. They argue that the task and study of managing diversity in our increasingly global economies and organizations must be considered simultaneously at a number of levels. For instance, in chapter three, the research on the Japanese car industry demonstrates that national culture and equality legislation can have profound effects on the degree to which diversity-management policy and practice can be transferred from one part of an organization’s international operations to another.
The transferability of diversity strategy is one of a number of key themes that run throughout the book. A second is the challenges and barriers diversity specialists face in seeking to initiate change in the workplace. The authors identify the structural constraints faced by these managers, for instance organizational culture, and contrast these to “the dynamic agency of the diversity manager” to initiate change through discourse and control of resources.
The authors argue that, despite progress, diversity officers do not enjoy favorable status in their organizations in the UK. Moreover, diversity management is still predominantly driven by legal-compliance concerns.
The book offers both practitioners and academics a theoretically grounded yet practically focused text to assist in the study and practice of managing equality and diversity strategy in the global workplace.
The elegant entwining of key themes such as the role of diversity managers, the contest between equality and diversity and the need to understand the managing of diversity as a multi-level discipline give new insight into the subject.
Reviewed by Tony Bennett, Faculty of Organisation and Management, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK.
A longer version of this review was originally published in Equal Opportunities International, Vol. 28 No. 5, 2009.