Sensemaking in Complex Situations: A case study of the Emergency Service of Copenhagen

Ingrid Arem Gundersen & Johanna Fanny Elisabeth Hansell

Studenteropgave: Kandidatafhandlinger


The purpose of this thesis is to expand an already existing theory with an analytical and empirical contribution. Karl E Weick introduced sensemaking in organizations for more than 20 years ago. However, there has not been done much research on sensemaking in organizations that are characterized by working with complex situations, such as the Emergency Services. Within the Emergency Service, one finds professions such as Police, Ambulance drivers and Firefighters. People working in these professions have to face complex situations on a daily basis when they are called out to a task, and their work is associated with having to work under ambiguity and uncertainty. They do not know what they are going to meet when they get the call from the dispatcher, and they have to solve tasks in all kinds of environment. As we felt there were lacking research regarding how people working in such professions sensemake about their job, we wanted to contribute by investigating how employees working in Copenhagen’s Emergency Service sensemake about the decisions they have to make when they are faced with complex situations in their job. To be able to investigate this, we have done a multiple case study on Falck and the Danish Police Force, as they are the major actors in the Emergency Service of Copenhagen. By interviewing employees in these organizations, we were able to gather empirical data that could be used to analyze the afore mentioned problem.

UddannelserCand.merc.sol Strategy, Organization and Leadership, (Kandidatuddannelse) Afsluttende afhandling
Antal sider111