Ambiguous Culture in Greenland Police: Proposing a Multi-dimensional Framework of Organizational Culture for Human Resource Management Theory and Practice

Sara Louise Muhr*, Lotte Holck, Sine Nørholm Just

*Corresponding author for this work

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This article places ambiguity at the centre of Human Resource Management theory and practice of organizational culture and advances a multi-dimensional framework that makes productive use of tensions between cultural integration and differentiation. Providing an illustrative analysis of Greenland Police, we identify a clash between a strong integrational pull and a similarly powerful differentiating force, involving an integrated occupational culture and differentiated national sub-cultures. This clash, we show, becomes productive when organizational members articulate and enact ambiguous identities. Emphasising the contextuality of organizational culture, we do not believe the empirical findings to be generalisable, but, instead, offer the analytical framework for studying multi-dimensional organizational culture as our main contribution. Conceptually, we emphasise how ambiguity is articulated in and between integration and differentiation, thus enhancing the relationality of the dimensions. The practical aim is to set ambiguous dynamics in motion that enable productive relations between different cultural dimensions.
Original languageEnglish
JournalHuman Resource Management Journal
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)826-843
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2022


  • Ambiguity
  • Culture
  • Differentiation
  • HRM
  • Hybridity
  • Integration

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