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Management, Organisation and Quality of Work

The research group is engaged in research in organisation and management seen from a work environment perspective. The purpose is generation of new knowledge about the relations between management, organisation and the work environment, and subsequently to use this knowledge for improving the work environment quality. The management, the organisational structure, and the culture determine whether improvements of the work environment occur in the enterprises, because they shape the organisational ability to absorb and transmit knowledge and learn from own experience. The management form and the organisational structure determine the explicit possibilities for improvements of the work environment whereas the organisational culture expresses norms and values in the organisations and thus the understanding of the work environment and its importance. Furthermore, the organisational culture reflects different sub-cultures and interests of the organisations. Hence, the management form, the organisational structure and the culture are central for the understanding of the quality of and the possibilities for improvements of the work environment. The impact of activities directed at the work environment depends on the organisational ability to change practice. Methodologically, the research group applies economic theories of the firm, management theories, sociological interpretations and anthropological methods in the analyses of the physical as well as the psychosocial work environment. The research incorporates national as well as enterprise level and can be described within two different but connected strings.

  • The influence of work environment efforts on enterprise actions
  • Firm strategies, management and organisation connected to work environment

The influence of work environment efforts on enterprise actions

This string includes investigation of how to motivate enterprises to engage in work environment activities, including motivation for why they engage. The research area incorporates the impact of public regulations and enforcement as well as the impact of the labour market organisations. The effect of research interventions on the work environment is also of interest. The research is directed at generating knowledge of how work environment activities are implemented and what can improve the implementation. Compared with conventional medical research, research conducted by the MOWE group does not search for an effective pill, but for the best way to make the patient consume it. However, in most cases, the pill and the consumption of it cannot be clearly separated. The research is directed at understanding factors such as motivation, interests, actors, cultures, management, ownership, firm size, industries, organisational forms, strategies etc. and their importance for work environment activities in firms.

  • Currently, the group undertakes research in the following topics within this string:
  • How does certified management for work environment function (CERVA)
  • David - Centre for research in production, management and work environment in small enterprises, with a subproject on the possibilities for the sector work environment councils and labor market organisations to support prevention activities aimed at small companies
  • Workplace assessment of the psychosocial work environment
  • The work environment in the future – the need for new preventive strategies
  • CSR – The use of Corporate Social Responsibility in the work environment efforts in small enterprises

Firm strategies, management and organisation connected to work environment

This string includes research in how to integrate the work environment in firm strategies, management and organisation, and in addition the consequences for the work environment of general firm strategies, management and organisation. The research of the group emphasises how the work environment is affected by enterprise management and development strategies, and how importance given to work environment supports the possibilities for generating more competitive and innovative firms. , together with other Nordic countries, is internationally remarkable as we have an organisational culture marked by low power distance and high level of trust between management and employees, concurrently with employees taking responsibility and initiatives. This is of importance for competitiveness, innovation and open possibilities for a shared understanding between management of employees of the work environment.

The research within this string is directed at practical integration of the work environment within management concepts and development strategies (i.e. lean management, quality management, project organisation, and corporate social responsibility (CSR)). Development of new firm strategies which integrate the work environment is also of interest for the group.

Currently, the research in this string includes:

Lean without stress

Stress prevention in knowledge work

Attractive work places in the slaughterhouse industry

Job Quality – unskilled labour in the future (call centres)

The work environment in the future – subprojects concerning new technology and physical inactivity and employment conditions.

AMICA – Improving working conditions in call centres through benchmarking and networking

Furthermore, the LOA-group is affiliated to the EU-project WORKS, which is a study of the reorganisation of the value chain of enterprises and the consequences for the quality of work. The LOA-group carries out qualitative case studies of restructuring of slaughterhouses and public bus transport and the consequences for work organisation and quality of work.

Members of MOWE group

Peter Hasle, senior reseacher,

Merete Pedersen, project secretary,

Jan H. Pejtersen, senior researcher,

Pia Bramming, senior researcher,

Ole H. Sørensen, researcher,

Lise Granerud, researcher,

Dorte Boesby Dahl, research assistant,

Kristian Gylling Olesen, research assistant,

Contact: NRCWE web editors

National Research Centre for the Working Environment | Lersø Parkallé 105 | DK-2100 Copenhagen O | Denmark |

Phone +45 3916 5200 | fax +45 3916 5201 | e-mail: | CVR: 15413700 | EAN: 5798000399518

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