Konkurrencekultur i gymnasiet og dens betydning for erhvervslivet

Christina Bang Nielsson & Sirpa Kilund

Student thesis: Master thesis


Competition culture in the Danish high schools and its implications for the Danish corporations The purpose of this thesis is to examine the competition culture in the Danish equivalent to high schools, gymnasium. The overall purpose is to examine some of the prevalent values and aspects of the culture in the Danish high schools and compare them with expectations to values and personal skills of future employees by the corporations today. This thesis shows that there is a discrepancy between the values in the high schools and in the corporations. The media debate in Denmark show that many young students feel pressured both academically and socially and that there is a fierce competition culture in the high schools. Some literature suggests that the fierce competition culture is an obstacle for creative thinking. We have conducted a focus group interview with students from two high schools and interviews with a teacher from a different high school and representatives from two corporations and a trade organization to examine their values and their opinions of five chosen topics centered around the media debate: Competition culture, stress, narcissism, will and ability to cooperate and creativity. The examination is based on the following theories. Ronald Inglehart’s theories about the differences between modern and postmodern values, Christopher Lasch’s theories about narcissism and competition culture, Richard Florida’s theories about the increasing importance of the creative class and Abraham Maslow’s theories about needs, values and motivation. Our findings show that the competitive culture in the high schools to a high degree contribute to enhancing competitive values in the students. The students are ambiguous about their attitude to competition, but cannot help being influenced by the culture and end up being competitive in their mindsets. The Danish corporations on the other hand, have all stated very clearly, that the most important skills are the will and ability to cooperate with colleagues and all stakeholders outside the organization and creative and innovative skills for the development of future solutions.

EducationsMA in International Business Communication (Intercultural Marketing), (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2017
Number of pages104