Research profile: Binod Sundararajan

Binod Sundararajan, Rowe School of Business

The TAEC model of diversity for organizational effectiveness

The issue of managing diversity in most societies of the world, which are rapidly becoming multicultural, is an urgent one that requires prolonged deliberation and advanced implementation. Even as the rate of diversification rises, change in attitudes in society may not be keeping pace. This creates a gap for the societal unit under analysis in terms of achieving the desired level of productivity and reaping the economic benefits attributable to having diverse workforces. We conceptualize this problem at both the individual and organizational level and propose a model for diversity adoption and training that takes into consideration a combined cognitive- and affective-based attitude shift approach. We advance the TAEC model, which posits that a diverse society must shift progressively through four attitudes, starting from Tolerance to Acceptance and moving on to Embracing and Celebrating diversity. We outline the variables that will help explicate how this model can serve as a useful tool for diversity training and organizational effectiveness. Understanding these mechanisms will help us decipher how diversity may be utilized to achieve the desirable degree, as well as quality of collaboration cosmopolitanism required to achieve organizational objectives. The concept of collaboration cosmopolitanism (Bozeman and Corley in Research Policy, 33(4), 599–616, 2004) pertains to various aspects of institutional and geographic distance in collaboration. Collaboration cosmopolitanism refers to the collaboration pattern whereby individuals work with those who are socially and geographically distant from them.