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PhD Defence

Leadership and inclusiveness in public organizations

Tuesday 20 November 2018
Academy Building
Rapenburg 73
2311 GJ Leiden


Based on the findings from the individual empirical studies, the central research question: “How do diversity management and leadership affect inclusiveness in public organizations and teams, and in turn affect outcomes on the individual and team level?”, can be answered.

First, this dissertation has shown the value of inclusiveness for public organizations. The research shows that inclusiveness is related to various positive outcomes, for both employees and organizations, such as employees’ commitment and involvement. This
finding is particular significant since inclusiveness in a public sector context enables organizations to respond more effectively to complex problems that may result from a diversified society.

Second, diversity management is associated with greater inclusiveness when employees perceive it to be supportive of all employees, and not only for specific minorities. This means that diversity management should embrace all employees’ uniqueness as well as foster their belongingness in the organization. In experiencing
this, employees reciprocate with commitment to and involvement in the organization.

Third, inclusiveness develops in teams. This involves cognitive processes linked to an information decision-making perspective in which diverse resources such as
perspectives, ideas and skills are exchanged, discussed and utilized. Affective processes are also important in making team members feel safe and that they belong. Since these are processes that occur in daily organizational life, the team is the key organizational
unit, and their formal leaders in the prime position to support those processes that enable inclusiveness.

This research has shown that diversity management is even more effective if direct supervisors adopt appropriate leadership behaviours. This involves leadership that stimulate employees to exchange, discuss and learn from the different perspectives and ideas that result from different ethnic-cultural backgrounds.


  • Prof. S.M. Groeneveld


PhD defences are free; you do not have to register.

PhD dissertations

PhD dissertations by Leiden PhD students are available digitally after the defence through the Leiden Repository, that offers free access to these PhD dissertations. Please note that in some cases a dissertation may be under embargo temporarily and access to its full-text version will only be granted later.

Press contact

Maarten Muns, Scientific Communications Adviser, Leiden University
+31 71 527 3282

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