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the organization together via patterns of shared meaning, while Swartz and Jordon (1980)

suggested that culture is the composition of expectations and beliefs about behavior

shared in the organization. Therefore, organizational culture is expected to have an

important bearing on behavior (Cooke & Szumal, 2000; Chatman & Barsade, 1995;

Martin & Siehl, 1983; Schein, 1985).

There are some natural drawbacks to attempts to empirically measure culture due

to its inherent subjectivity (Geertz, 1973; Rousseau, 1990). Culture is a socially

constructed phenomenon and as such may be difficult to capture and quantify (Denison,

1996). Geertz (1973), in an attempt to emphasize the subjective nature of culture cites

Goodenaugh, who believed that culture was embedded in the minds and hearts of people.

Therefore, it could be maintained that culture has infinite forms such as is the number of

possible subjective interpretations. Such a conclusion precludes the quantifiable

measurement of organizational culture.

A debate making the culture literature even more complicated has revolved

around the methods of culture measurement (Denison, 1996; Denison & Mishra, 1995).

In the emic measurement tradition, researchers have advocated qualitative methods of

measurement capturing the native point of view (Denison, 1996), while the etic

perspective, which allows for quantitative measurement with instruments theoretically

developed by the culture researcher has been applied more consistently to the

measurement of climate rather than culture. In spite of the ongoing disagreements over

the nature and measurement of culture, a number of quantitative instruments have been

developed through a combination of methods that allow for the quantifiable measurement

of culture.


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