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Diversity & Inclusion: A Key Success Factor for International Organisations

In her inaugural lecture, Prof. Dr. Katja Starken talked about the challenges and opportunities of diversity and inclusion initiatives and how they can be successfully implemented.

To be successful in our globalized world, international organizations must increasingly look at how they can diversify and become more inclusive. The positive effects of diversity and inclusion include increased innovation, greater flexibility to adapt to the needs of different markets, lower turnover, higher employee engagement and an improved reputation as a socially responsible and forward-looking company. These factors contribute significantly to increasing the competitiveness and financial success of companies.

However, as with any change process, there are factors such as cultural differences, prejudices and resistance to change that can make the implementation of diversity and inclusion concepts more difficult. Corporate management has an important role to play here, using various tools and methods to sustainably influence change at a cultural and structural level of the organization and establish an inclusive corporate culture as a basis in the long term.

"Diversity and inclusion are no longer optional extras," summarizes Professor Katja Starken, "they are not only a moral imperative, but an essential prerequisite for the sustainable success of international organizations in today's globalized and increasingly diverse world."

Katja Starken has been Professor of International Management in the Department of Strategy & Leadership at HSBA since December 2023. She has also been the university's Diversity Officer since January 2024 and in this position is committed to equality for our students, teaching staff and employees. Her research focuses on the topics of organizational behavior and diversity in an international context.