Presentation Details

The Fourth International Conference on Knowledge, Culture and Change in Organisations

Diversity Ethics: A Compass Pointing to Relationality and Reciprocity for Navigating Turbulent Seas

Associate Professor Maria Humphries, Dr Betsan Martin.

Participants in this conference are invited to focus on information and communications technologies that may inform the globalising knowledge based economy. Our perspective is one of co-enquiry. Co-inquiry is both the communication technique we use and the information we share about what it means to be human and what it is yet possible to become.

We have been working in the area of human diversity and its implications for the relationships we form and through which we shape the organisational patterns and procedures of our humanity. Our research moves from critiques of globalisation of corporate capitalism and its attendant ethic of exploitation, assimilation and colonisation, to inviting attention to an ethic of relationality, mutuality, and reciprocity.

Co-enquiry for transformational change is being developed through collaboration in a range of projects devised to embrace diversity as a resource for reciprocity and for achieving shared purpose. We have worked with indigenous economic development projects, with women aspiring to organisational change, and with researchers and practitioners proposing discourses of human rights and responsibilities in organisational practice. This process of co-enquiry has been invoked in organisational change efforts ranging from small community groups to governmental attempts to create respectful partnerships among parties of differing values, aspirations and practices. In this workshop we invite participants to focus with us on developing principles of co-enquiry that generate respect for difference. In our workshop we describe some of these projects and invite participants to apply this approach to their own research areas.


Associate Professor Maria Humphries  (New Zealand)
Associate Professor
Waikato Management School
University of Waikato

Associate Professor Humphries is interested in the introduction and use of critical theory in management education. Her work includes research in diversity management and associated ethics. Currently she is involved in the establishment of a programme in community organisation and management with associated fully on-line Post Graduate qualifications at

Dr Betsan Martin  (New Zealand)
School of Management Studies, University of Waikato Hamilton, New Zealand

Dr Betsan Martin and Assoc. Prof Maria Humphries are research colleagues who work in the interface of academic and community sectors, with speical experience in not-for profit/third sector research. They are presently engaged in a case study on building relationships with Maori in a sustainable environmental development. Dr Martin and Dr Humphries have developed the notion of a double-hulled waka as a model of relationality and respect for diversity, in collaboration with an indigenous group .
Their academic research and teaching is in Education and Management Studies respectively. Both researchers are involved in 'third sector' research, building partnerships as researchers with community and indigenous groups.

  • Co-enquiry
  • Organisational change
  • Diversity
  • Ethics
  • Reciprocity

(60 min. Workshop, English)