Demographics, Individual Value Structures, and Diversity Attitudes in the United Kingdom

Judy P. Strauss, Olukemi O. Sawyerr, Adegoke Oke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study explores relationships between race, gender, values-types (openness to change, self-transcendence, conservation and self-enhancement) and diversity attitudes (universal-diverse orientation) in a sample of 153 respondents from the United Kingdom. UDO consists of three attitudinal components: realistic appreciation (cognition), comfort with difference (feeling), and diversity of contact (behavior). All predictors related significantly with universal-diverse orientation (UDO) attitudes in the expected direction. Women and non-white people more open to change and motivated to transcend selfish concerns and promote the welfare of others (self-transcendence), had more positive attitudes. People who held conservative values and were motivated to pursue their own success and dominate others (self-enhancers) had less positive attitudes. Self-transcendence and race interacted to predict UDO overall, realistic appreciation and diversity of contact such that higher scores on self-transcendence for whites led to more positive attitudes but not for nonwhites, whose scores on UDO were consistent and positive. Gender interacted with self-transcendence to predict realistic appreciation such that higher scores on self-transcendence led to more positive appreciation of difference for men–the reverse was true for women. Self-enhancement and self-transcendence were the two value-types found to relate to all subcomponents of UDO. Diversity of contact (the behavioral component) related to all predictors but gender. The results of this study have implications for change management in organizations especially as they relate to the provision of training to manage and change peoples' attitudes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)147-170
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Change Management
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • culture
  • Diversity attitudes
  • United Kingdom
  • values

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Strategy and Management


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