"Det er typisk CBS!": Analyse af differentieringen mellem kandidatuddannelserne på CBS i et narrativt perspektiv

Helene Winnecke Jensen

Student thesis: Master thesis


Differentiation as an acknowledgment of the individual and the members’ unique skills and needs is a necessity within organisations. However, the discipline of differentiating without excluding anyone is difficult. At Copen-hagen Business School, differentiation between the graduate programs is an inevitable part of the daily rou-tine. Graduate students experience exclusion based on the current differentiation, and there is a risk that this can harm the dynamics and provoking disharmony and internal battles between the members of CBS. Thus, this thesis seeks to examine how differentiation plays a part in making the students experiencing exclu-sion. As the thesis takes a social constructivist approach, this is done by examining how organizational narra-tives, told from three different perspectives, are able to shed light on the differentiation. Thereby, this is an empirical and qualitative study based on narrative theory by Jerome Bruner and Michael White. The purpose is to clarify how the differentiation is affecting the members and how this can be a challenge for CBS. Carrying out narrative interviews with four members (representing the administration, a graduate program and a study board) the thesis found that four dominant narratives are being told about the differentiation between the graduate programs. According to theory, dominant narratives are the essence of people’s sense making process as the narratives are created of past experiences. Therefore, when graduates point out differentiation as the source of the exclusion, it indicates that this is not the first time they experience this. From the dominant narratives the thesis concludes that CBS promoting itself only on traditional economic pro-grams creates internal gaps as the remaining students interpret this as lack of acknowledgement of them. Sim-ultaneously, the study board tells of an internal battle, which results in less knowledge sharing between the study boards. Further, it can be concluded that the relation between students and administration is problemat-ic, as the students feel neglected. Apparently this stems from poor communication of the administration’s pri-orities. Finally, the thesis concludes that the differentiation has an impact on the graduates’ sense of communi-ty – within their own studies as well as CBS as a whole. This peaks if students are not celebrated officially by CBS when they graduate. The final part of their studies is of great importance to them, and when it is neglect-ed, it has a significant influence on the narratives told about CBS in the afterlife of the studies. From the social constructivist perspective it is essential that the impact of the narratives and their reproducing process is brought to the attention of the organisation and its members.

EducationsMSc in Business Administration and Organizational Communication, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2014
Number of pages113