Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Public Affairs and Administration

First Advisor

Dr. Peter Kobrak

Second Advisor

Dr. Mary Anne Bunda


The purpose of this study is to identify the local-cosmopolitan orientation of a subset of university support staff members and to examine the relationship between that orientation and (a) gender, (b) age, (c) years of service, (d) percentage of business/financial tasks in one’s job, (e) percentage of time spent in direct contact with students, and (f) the self-perception of how essential one’s job is to the mission of the university. The local-cosmopolitan concept used was based on the definition by Qouldner (1957) and includes his three elements: loyalty, operational style, and reference group use. Each one of these elements, as well as the overall local-cosmopolitan orientation, was tested for relationships with the six variables listed above.

Data were collected from 527 support staff university employees by means of a Likert-type questionnaire. All of the employees were supervisors from the administrative-professional staff at the university. Statistical tests were run using a 1 test for the nominal data, an analysis of variance for the ordinal data, and a Pearson correlation coefficient for the interval data.

Results showed strong support for the concept of a combined cosmo-local orientation with each of the three separate elements as well as the overall orientation. The study also produced evidence that significant relationships do exist between the element of loyalty and at least some groups of every one of the six independent variables.

Of the three elements used to define the overall orientation, loyalty produced more differences. Some of these support staff employees had significant relationships that emphasize loyalty to the employing organization. A profile was produced that tended to be female, older, more years of service, moderate business/financial tasks, little student contact, and a perception of their job’s essentialness.

The theory of local-cosmopolitan orientation can still be used as a framework from which organizational culture can be studied. However, it is evolving with the changes in the workplace. The combined orientation appears to have replaced the bipolar positions proposed by Gouldner.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access