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Foreign staff: Danes are not very friendly

The busses run on time, the quality of life is fine, and the University of Copenhagen has an appealing work culture. The only problem is that the Danes don’t make you feel welcome, shows staff survey

The University of Copenhagen is a great place to work, and Copenhagen is a great place to live. But don’t expect a social life.

This is according to an in-depth data run on University of Copenhagen data, as part of the Expat Study compiled by Oxford Research.

The study interviewed 137 international employees at the University of Copenhagen.

Read our previous article about the general study here.

Not open or inviting

While Denmark scores highly when it comes to personal safety, infrastructure and overall quality of life, the possibilities for meeting Danes or even other expats do not live up to expectations.

When asked how they rate Denmark as a host country for foreign professionals in terms of ‘open and inviting people,’ just seven per cent of the international staff ticked the ‘very good’ box.

41 per cent rated the openness of the Danes as either ‘less good’ or ‘not good’.

Read the Copenhagen data run on the Expat Study 2010 here (you must be signed in to KUnet).

Unfriendliness a surprise

This statistic confirms a stereotype that making friends with Danes is no easy task.

Three out of every four staff say it is difficult to form friendships with Danes.

Interestingly, for a lot of international staff the unfriendly Danes come as a surprise: Two out of five international staff say that their opinion has changed in a negative direction about the Danes as an ‘open and inviting people’.

Read a KUnet article about the same staff study here (you must be signed in to KUnet).

Appealing work culture

The study reveals other interesting statistics on the views of the international staff working at the University of Copenhagen.

On the whole, Danish work culture is very appealing, and the freedom of research is one of the University of Copenhagen’s most attractive benefits.

Of those who like going to work in Denmark the things they like most about the job is the fact that the workplace is relaxed and informal. Also, international staff feel that that the University of Copenhagen respects the family lives of their employees.

The majority of the international staff surveyed are involved in the natural science or engineering and technology fields. For those involved in research, freedom to research is one of the main factors considered when accepting a position in Denmark.

Read our previous article about the general study here.,

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