Dilemmas in organizing: - Differences between conflict and dilemma

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperResearch


Organizational paradoxes situate employees and managers in dilemmas that are often associated with tension and psychosocial strain. In this paper we explore how dilemma-thinking may enable a sustainable social and organizational work environment? In order to do that we set out to look into this phenomenon from a complexity and dialectical perspective. We combine the experience of dilemmas with the role of difference and processes of sensemaking in organizational becoming. From the theoretical framing we continue to explore to what extend dilemma-thinking may be a way forward to cope with this social and organizational work environment challenge, thus also easing potential tension and psychosocial strain. Dilemma-thinking in this setting is an action-research approach, in which an explicit framework of paradoxes and dilemmas is introduced to the organizational participants, and is associated with participatory dialogue about and around dilemma-situations from the participants everyday-practices. The paper is situated in the context of a hospital ward in the Copenhagen area, in which nurses experience dilemmas with regard to their primary task.
Translated title of the contributionDilemmaer i organsering - forskelle mellem conflikter og dilemmaer
Original languageEnglish
Publication date20 Aug 2020
Number of pages19
Publication statusPublished - 20 Aug 2020
EventNordic Working Life Conference: The changing nature of
Nordic working life. 2020
- Online
Duration: 28 Sep 202029 Sep 2020
Conference number: 10


ConferenceNordic Working Life Conference: The changing nature of
Nordic working life. 2020
OtherConference postponed from spring 2020 to September 2020. Held online.
Internet address

Bibliographical note

Virtual conference. In the conference programme the title of the paper is: "Managing Dilemmas in Everyday Work"

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