Organisationsutveckling och jämställdhet: En studie i tre företag

Translated title of the contribution: Organizational development and equality between men and women

Inga-Britt Drejhammar

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis (monograph)


The Swedish Program "Leadership, Organization and Communication" (LOM) was a research and a development program designed to support local processes of change in the private and the public sector. The program was carried out between 1985 and 1990. The strategy of LOM was focused on two basic principles: the principle of democratic dialogue and the principle of development of a "communicative infrastructure" for interaction and for rational actions. The process of establishing a communicative infrastructure was focused on incorporating as many of those concerned as possible into an organization. A democratic dialogue and the establishing of communicative infrastructures were regarded as prerequisites for bringing about real change in organizations.

The major aim of the present project was to investigate whether the strategy of the LOM program and its key concept, that of democratic dialogue, could be used to make the role of gender visible and to develop both the organization itself and equality between men and women within the organization. Three companies participated in the the project.

The theoretical objective was to develop the theory, in which the democratic dialogue served as the key concept, concerning the question of equality between sexes.

The practical objective was to achieve organizational development within the companies, with special emphasis being placed on equality between sexes.

Certain changes in strategy, as compared with a traditional LOM-strategy, were necessary in order to obtain symmetry in the dialogues between men and women. It was necessary to emphasize the criteria for a democratic dialogue in order to give women the same opportunities as men taking part in the various dialogues conducted during and after the project. Special groups of women employees were established in the three companies with the aim of supporting the women within these companies generally in their efforts to develop communicative competence and to broaden their possibilities of contributing to organizational development work. Other special groups formed within the two industrial companies were discussion groups composed of foremen. Another intervention was holding meetings between women and men who had participated in the different groups.

One central result of the project was the establishment of arenas for dialogue and new infrastructures for communication in two of the companies. In the arenas thus created, both men and women could discuss such questions as those concerning work situation, production, quality or competence. In the third company no such arenas could be established. Another result of the project was the creation of a new awareness of women at the work place and of their situation there. Several women in the companies obtained more qualified positions. New routines were also established such as better planning for utilizing women´s knowledge and competence, routines for work rotation and work enhancement for women, improved task descriptions and better work development planning. In conclusion the project achieved new insights into the role of woman in organizations and problems connected with their situation there. The readiness to learn appeared to increase, the participants becoming to a greater extent than before, "reflecting practicioners".
Translated title of the contributionOrganizational development and equality between men and women
Original languageSwedish
Awarding Institution
  • Department of Psychology
  • [unknown], [unknown], Supervisor, External person
Award date1998 Apr 24
ISBN (Print)91-88598-01-2
Publication statusPublished - 1998

Bibliographical note

Defence details
Date: 1998-04-24
Time: 10:15
Place: Edens hörsal, Paradisgatan 5H, Lund
External reviewer(s)
Name: Friberg, Tora
Title: Docent
Affiliation: Kulturgeografiska Institutionen, Lunds universitet

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Psychology


  • Applied and experimental psychology


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