Open Access Journal

ISSN: 2183-2803

Article | Open Access

Meanings and Motives before Measures: The ‘What’ and ‘Why’ of Diversity within the Mossos d’Esquadra and the Politie Utrecht

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Abstract:  This article proposes the definition of and motivation for diversity (policy) as an important research topic that should be studied before focusing on diversity policy measures. As such, it strives to demonstrate the academic potential of an analytical framework that outlines fundamental choices made in these respects. What types of diversity do organizations focus on? And what do they want to achieve with (increased) diversity? In this article the discourses underlying the diversity policies in two regional European police forces—the Mossos d’Esquadra and the Politie Utrecht—are analyzed. The main observation is that the results are surprisingly similar in spite of contextual factors that may lead observers to expect otherwise: they both focus on gender and migrant background, identifying these types of diversity as collective in nature, while striving for equal opportunities for individuals despite these collective differences. This article also explores possibilities for further theory building by formulating possible explanations for the similarities and differences which have been identified, suggesting a possible hierarchy in diversity within European organizations, and describing how the motivation for diversity might influence the effectiveness of diversity policies.

Keywords:  diversity; police; Catalonia, Netherlands



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