Title

The Relationship Between Identity Orientation and Perspectives On Diversity: Testing a Model

Author

Jennifer Foil

Date of Award

2005

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Economic and Workforce Development

First Advisor

Cyndi Gaudet

Advisor Department

Economic and Workforce Development

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to test Brickson's theoretical model on identity orientation and diversity management as presented in the Academy of Management Review in 2000. The study was designed to determine whether responses between majority and minority group members accurately reflect the identity orientation of the organization. Two small organizations, an institution of higher education and a casino restaurant, participated in the study. A survey questionnaire was designed from established scales and distributed to all employees at each site. Multiple regression analysis revealed that there were some significant relationships between majority group members' behavior and minority group members' affective response as well as between minority group members' behavior and majority group members' affective response. These responses accurately reflected the collective identity orientation. From an informal, semi-structured interview, it was determined that the collective identity orientation accurately reflected the global organizational outcomes concerning diversity as predicted by Brickson's model. Although not all hypotheses were supported in this study, a step was taken towards understanding how organizational contexts influence perspectives diversity management within an organization.