This paper contributes to the current debate on the societal relevance of social sciences in general and management studies in particular. Using a narrative framework, we critique what we view an oversimplified discussion of Modes 1 or 2 knowledge production and provide a more complex depiction of various professional academic identities, along with their relation to cer-tain institutional structures and discourses. We show how different narratives relate to – and produce – different forms of professional identities and societal relevance. Drawing on the work of Zygmunt Bauman, we explore three main narratives for defining and creating societal rele-vance in management studies, each with its specific scholarly identities and institutional prere quisites: a modernist narrative in which societal relevance is defined by powerful external stakeholders; an interpretive narrative tied to local concerns and interests; and a consumption oriented narrative in which demand and the will to pay for academic services regulate what is considered relevant. We conclude that societal relevance presents itself to the social sciences in various shapes and forms. This leads to a multiplicity of narratives informing a variety of complementary professional academic identities.
The idea of the reviews section is that it should cross (between and beyond) some of the traditional boundaries of organizational and management 'science'. It will include reviews of published material (paper and web-based), performance, art, installations, architecture, political events, etc. - whatever may contribute to discussion around the themes of particular editions of the journal. The idea about the reviewers is that they should be interesting people with something to say/show/exhibit that will engage the interest and enthusiasm of others. Hence, we are seeking pieces that provoke, stimulate and engage.
This discussion piece sets the tone for this new journal in its narrative presentation form. It will run over two issues and is open to include feedback from readers. In debating the case for TAMARA to represent either a) a postmodern science approach to organisational analysis or b) a postmodern aesthetic appreciation, the two participants reflect on the relevance of critical theory to their life and work. Hence rather than the intellectual exchange taking place in a disembodied form, they situate their intellectual history via issues of social location and lived experience. They reflect on the integral connection between theory and practice with the objective of furthering their commitment to effecting social change. The first short article takes the form of initially introducing the authors and then moves to a discussion of the role of critical pedagogy. The detailed references to teaching content are broached in order to demonstrate the efficacy of critical analysis for pedagogical purposes; not to focus on the relative achievement of the individual lecturers involved. The second longer article entails a debate of central relevance to the Journal, addressing: what type of orientation a critical postmodern analysis of organisational politics might take? The discussion begins with a dialogue between the two protagonists on the pros and cons of adopting a scientific approach. The focus then switches to situating the plurality of postmodernism; analysing the `affirmative' versus `sceptical' opposition. The contribution of the `White French Pomo Boys' is interrogated in relation to the late modernist thesis. Finally, Boje proposes an eclectic integration between modernist and postmodernist influences in the name of `narrative ethics'. Bissett responds, outlining the dilemmas of employing unreconstructed narratives. She deconstructs the notion of the aesthetic as a modernist cultural category, in order to propose a postmodern `political poetic' alternative..
When asked to serve on the TAMARA Editorial Board, we were honored. To be able to work and theorize with colleagues in such diverse and important fields as organizational science, critical postmodernism, green theory and left economics was a rare treat. We come from the tradition of "critical pedagogy." For us, critical pedagogy stands at the nexus of critical/postmodern/poststructuralist theories, multicultural theories, cultural studies and struggles for social justice and a progressive politics within education. And truly, we expect to learn more from our TAMARA colleagues and submitters than they will from us. And to then be asked to react to the important research presented in "Think Global, Act Local," by de Cieri, Wolfram Cox & Fenwick, was even more of an honor; for these researchers truly "push the envelope" of organizational science-specifically, by examining "critical participation" within the context of "strategic international human resource management" (SIHRM). In this essay, we choose to react to de Cieri, Wolfram Cox & Fenwick by going "old school." For us, critical pedagogy began with el abuleito, intelectual, Compañero Paulo Freire. While he was Brazilian, and we are Chicano and European American, as left educationalists, we feel an enduring political, cultural and educational bond with Freire. Although he died in 1997, his connection to all educational progressives, and all who are interested in advancing struggles for social justice and dignity among all women and men, we must always remember the legacy and importance of his years of living his theory and theorizing his practice.
In writing my response, I have chosen a somewhat different tack from the norm. I want to write what the articles moved me to write - not a scholarly criticism, but what the articles caused me to feel, to think, to believe, to express. Essentially, I want to genuinely respond. My response takes the form of what I believe "we" should do in response to David Boje's Tamara Manifesto and to the other articles as they stand as examples of what critical postmodern organization science can do.This I Believe.
Tamara: Journal of Critical Postmodern Organization Science is an interdisciplinary dialog whose time has come. In their Communist Manifesto, written in late 1847, Marx and Engels wrote, "A spectre is haunting Europe - the spectre of communism. All the powers of old Europe have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this spectre: Pope and Tsar, Metternich and Guizot, French Radicals and German police-spies" (published 1848). The purpose of this essay is to combine Critical and Postmodern perspectives in the study of Organization Science.
TAMARA: Journal of Critical Postmodern Organization Science is about free speech and the relationship between science, organization, critical theory, global power, and postmodern culture.
I am by nature a postmodern storyteller. So I will begin Tamara with a story about conversations.
The TAMARA MANIFESTO defines how various knowledge areas intermingle in the dialogs of Tamara; in my editorial I explain how Tamara is the Mansion of Science with many rooms. Here I provide one founding story.
Van Uden et al assert that the world is best described as being a complex system, and, through the use of the 'complexity' discourse, students of organizations--organizations being regarded as complex sub-systems of the whole--can benefit from the various complexity science research programs. They argue that complexity theory in this respect is reminiscent of postmodern organization theory.
This paper draws on literature in the fields of organizational studies, industrial relations, and industrial sociology to attempt to address 'new paradigm' managerial initiatives that espouse sentiments of unitarism in their discourse from a UK perspective. The specific focus of this theoretical investigation is the output of the proponents of the 'Learning Organization'. It is argued that in such organizations, employers attempt to control and induce behavioural change in employees through the use of reorganization and instrumental discourse. Managerial commentators and theorists have written much about what the implementing agents' expectations are of the outcomes of such organizational initiatives. Among these expectations is that the new initiative will bring about a radical change in attitudes in the workplace and that unitarism will prevail. However, an as yet underdeveloped area of study is what happens when the subjects (i.e. employees) receive the initiative, the potential for counter-ideology and resistance to the initiative, and the forms resistance may take. It is these latter two issues that this paper concentrates on. Ultimately, the paper seeks to present a conceptual investigation of pluralism within, and the nature and implications of resistance in, the Learning Organization. An allusion to Beaumarchais' `Figaro' is used to illustrate the arguments.
Alors que 2007 a été déclarée année européenne pour l'égalité des chances, un nombre toujours plus important d'entreprises affichent leurs engagements en termes de lutte contre la discrimination et de valorisation de la diversité. Les actions promouvant l'égalité entre les sexes ou l'intégration des personnes handicapés, sont ainsi très largement avancées comme une preuve du caractère responsable des entreprises. Dans le même temps, la prise en compte de la diversité confessionnelle laisse place à un silence pesant. Or, selon une étude de la Commission Européenne réalisée en 20071 , sur l'état des discriminations en Europe, la France est le pays des 25 où l'existence de discrimination liée aux convictions religieuses est le plus fortement ressentie. A travers une approche transdisciplinaire mêlant apports de la sociologie, de l'anthropologie et des sciences de gestion, un travail de déconstruction a, à ce propos, été entrepris. Au plus loin des « effets cosmétiques » des autres actions engagées sous couvert de diversité, la diversité confessionnelle donne lieu à de réelles pratiques, dans les entreprises françaises aujourd'hui. Or, si ces pratiques semblent répondre à un réel besoin des entreprises comme de leurs salariés, elles apparaissent toujours plus ou moins occultées. S'appuyant sur une contextualisation du questionnement actuel sur la diversité confessionnelle en France, une approche itérative associant analyse théorique et expression des acteurs de terrains (responsables de la diversité et responsables de cabinet spécialisés dans la gestion de la diversité), pourra permettre d'éclairer les raisons du silence des organisations vis-à-vis d'une problématique essentielle au tissage d'un lien social durable vis-à-vis d'une population salariale hétérogène.
This paper explores the concept of transdisciplinarity, seeing it more as a useful framework than as a distinctly different research approach. As such it can help professionals from a full range of fields and people from all walks of life work together across the boundaries that normally separate them. The boundaries between the sciences and other fields are of the most concern. Because off this, transdisciplinarity is often equated to Mode 2 Science; i.e., science that engages with humans to solve problems together out in the world. A major concern here is with the strength of prevailing beliefs about the value of expertise and the importance of the specialized division of labor. These are viewed as important tools in the struggle to control one's own work. Of equal concern is the opposite danger that the topic will reify and become just one more academic discipline. Personal examples as well as an analysis of the literature on industrial sociology, the sociology of occupations and professions as well as that on transdisciplinarity itself are presented in this exploration.
Organizational evolution is presented in lieu of the concept of change, revolution, revitalization, etc. in that one can assert that organizations can only evolve, they cannot develop a new structure and paradigm from nonexistent precursors, elements, structures, etc. One year is action science based with the executives diving off of logs into the arms of their vice presidents, the next is playing games and doing puzzles to determine the company's cognitive centre, more recently its not been about expressing feelings and defenses, or understanding perception, but about being appreciated. In short, all of these evangelically based approaches which view an organization through a single lens fail
Organizational evolution is presented in lieu of the concept of change, revolution, revitalization, etc. in that one can assert that organizations can only evolve, they cannot develop a new structure and paradigm from nonexistent precursors, elements, structures, etc. One year is action science based with the executives diving off of logs into the arms of their vice presidents, the next is playing games and doing puzzles to determine the company's cognitive centre, more recently its not been about expressing feelings and defenses, or understanding perception, but about being appreciated. In short, all of these evangelically based approaches which view an organization through a single lens fail.
Different frameworks guide our research. In this edition we are interested to see how the methodology of discourse analysis is useful for shaping policy in the context of refugees, and we have included work from a variety of researchers all of whom engage with discourses in the context of refugees. A sub-theme of this issue emanates from our collective experiences working in a broad range of disciplines, many of which have relied upon qualitative data collection and in turn the analysis of narrative. Narrative data and discourse analysis are two different, though interrelated, approaches that are commonly used in the social sciences, but often they are either confused or have little or no impact at the policy level. While this paper focuses on the issue of discourse analysis, other papers within the issue concentrate on the use of narrative in constructing meaning and recording the experiences of refugees in Western nations. It is important that readers are aware of both discourse analysis and narrative in terms of refugee studies.
Reflection is often viewed as a specific intrapersonal process of epistemological questioning, but this is by necessity only part of the phenomenon. I will here argue for a critique of reflection and vanity in the social sciences by way of an inquiry into the academic economy. By recasting this as a hybrid phenomena, and then showing how such a reading can be used to reflect on the nature of reflection in academic work, I try to outline a project of developing a post-moralizing social science.
It is customary to promiscuously interconnect the well-established methodological conception of sociological reflexivity to multi-level metatheoretical analyses, representational tactics and strategies, self-conscious knowledge-production processes and, in general, epistemological questions and answers. However, Western reflexive thinking about culture, rationality, and scientific knowledge often tends to (somehow) reproduce the self-assured “one epistemological size fits all” standpoint of Eurocentrism, to arrogantly exclude alternative post-colonial theorizations and to implicitly ignore the irreducibility of the “ethical dimension”. The “reinvention” of this crucial dimension, within contemporary sociology and critical organizational research, entails the substantial incorporation of the “weak” performative circular reasoning as well as a new reflexive ethos and aesthetic of scientific modesty. The issue here is indeed the fruitful pluralist maximization of both ethical and cognitive possibilities. In this respect, the innovative “it could be otherwise” clause of radical intellectual inquiry remains central to our inter-disciplinary world- and self-accounts.
In this paper we discuss the meaning of newness in research in the times when new paradigms of science are emerging and the sciences have become more and more fragmentary. In the positivistic and monolithic era of social science, before Kuhn and year 1966, methodologies and methods interpreting newness were simpler. In this paper it is argued the newness is more and more in the text itself, and that the dynamics of texts comes from interrelations between the subject of the text (the researcher self) and the object of it (the research audience). Scientific knowledge becomes new when it is substantiated and connected to the prior one.
Writing the research reports is political by nature but so is also its reading. While citation index makes researchers powerful, in gaining decisions whom to refer the colleagues make political choices that are bound to some political contexts they live and career. Building a theoretical frame is not a pure and objectivistic thing but many ways a path of choices that build the research field. Behind is a lot of social capital of the academia and at the same time the text shows and even builds it. Again, it is less and less the empirical facts itself that contributes to newness, but the ways to conceptualize and contextualize empirically based knowledge.
In the times when subjectivity is grown into science and pure empirical data does not work in the same way it used to be, becoming a researcher with the right to access science text publishing is not only professional but more and more narrative by nature. The credibility and trust is of a lot of worth at the society of today, not least in academia. Personality, biography and social context of a researcher are perhaps becoming more important than it used to be and that makes the issue that the impact of the researcher on has grown. Gatekeepers of science and administrational processes that they guide form criteria according to which researchers are selected and promoted further. That way individual background issues like gender and ethnicity may either grow or diminish the credibility of the individual researcher and have a lot of impact on the fact on who passes the gate of becoming a knowledge holder in the future.
In the paper we also argue that subjectivity is more and more compensated by inter-subjectivity in writing because of joint texts. In gate-keeping about who enters the knowledge holder-limit this states as well.
Modern popularist teaching presents ethics as situational and relativistic. Rather than using this current approach a more classical and reactionary methodology that calls for the reevaluation of some of the elder philosophies that regarded right and wrong in the context of absolutism is required. Confusion between the concepts of beliefs, values, morals, laws, and ethics has increased to the point where many people today consider these related ideas as synonymous. It is essential to discuss these related concepts outside of any single religious or ethnically based belief system. To do otherwise would inject individualistic religious or ethnic beliefs and values into the discussion, thereby negating the universality of the argument. Both modern and traditional approaches to ethics have attempted either to manage the effects of unethical behavior after it occurs, or to give specific guidance and examples in order to prevent future similar occurrences. Unfortunately, both of these popular approaches are reactive at best. The optimal strategy is to take a proactive approach that can discern the root causes of unethical behavior so that this knowledge could be used as a preventative countermeasure to the everincreasing amounts of unethical behavior. Axiology, the study of ethics, is not a new field; but many modern authors and ethicists have avoided and continue to avoid the issue of ethical absolutism. Contrary to much modern thought, there is no reason to avoid the discussion of absolutism, as the concept of universal and immutable ethics can be reconciled fully with other contemporary schools of thought such as physical sciences, social sciences, and rationalism.
This paper aims to analyse the implications of negotiating ethnographic research access following research ethical codes and remain coherent with Critical Management Studies (CMS) principles. Through this reflective account, we seek to address the field of Organisation Studies (OS), where ethnographic research access has attracted little theoretical scholarly attention, and also to contribute to the renewed focus on ethical research practice within CMS literature. In addition, we also aim to contribute to broader debates about qualitative research practices by highlighting the ethical implications of establishing formal research access and to analyse the dilemmas that arise from the conflict between prescriptive ethical codes and researcher’s own conscience when carrying out field research. Rather than calling for a new, revised code of ethics, we appeal for a more open and honest debate about the pragmatic realities of critical, organisational ethnographic research.