Organisational Identity Identification

Organisational Identity Identification

Managing identification among organizational employees has firmly held a central position on the research agenda of organisational identity scholars. Researchers are often interested in identification because they hope that it will ultimately influence behaviour – be it remaining with the organisation or contributing to a higher degree of performance (e.g. Ashforth & Mael, 1989; Foreman & Whetten, 2002). One of the key issues for scholars is to get a better understanding of why some individuals engage in desired behaviour, whereas others do not.

An example of some of our published research on Organisational Identification is Dr. Mirdita Elstak’s PhD thesis “Flipping the Identity Coin”.

Mirdita Elstak’s dissertation on corporate identity discerns two approaches:

  • Bottom-up (the inductive approach): a corporate identity is formed by employees; the so-called perceived corporate identity.
  • Top-down (the deductive approach): a company’s corporate identity is defined by top-level management. Elstak makes a further distinction here:
    • Projected identity: the identity as claimed and communicated by the management, and;
    • Desired identity: the identity that the management would like to see realised in the future.

More information about the findings could be found in her thesis “Flipping the Identity Coin”