Diversity And Diversity Of Diversity

1657 WordsNov 24, 20167 Pages
people are the same. Thus, diversity studies would then be reduced to the conclusion that ‘everyone is different’ and, if this conclusion is accepted, the concept of diversity may become “nothing more than a benign, meaningless concept” (Nkomo, 1995). The danger in narrowly defining diversity, however, is that only one dimension of cultural diversity (race, age, ethnicity, or gender) is by and large the subject of research at a time. Since a cultural diversity dimension interacts with other dimensions of diversity narrow concept of diversity would be deficient by failing to recognize these interactions. Scholars, who advocate a broad definition (e.g. Jackson, May & Whitney, 1995) argue that diversity encompasses all the possible ways people can differ. Individuals, according to this school of thought, do not only differ because of their race, gender, age and other demographic categories, but also because of their values, abilities, organizational function, tenure and personality. They contend that an individual has multiple identities and that the manifold dimensions cannot be isolated in an organizational setting. Apart from bringing their race, age, ethnicity, and gender, individuals also come with their particular knowledge, personality, and cognitive style to the work place. Therefore, in order to understand the dynamics of a heterogeneous workforce, the interactive effects of multi-dimensional diversity have to be addressed. In addition, it is argued that a broadening
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