The article uses a longitudinal qualitative analysis of key transitions in the relationship between Fiat Auto and a major supplier to integrate a pragmatist model of action into the contemporary “practice” approach to the study of organizations. It builds on an affinity between pragmatist and practice approaches that has been widely recognized, but that has not yet been fully developed with reference to an empirical case. It argues that an analytic reliance on a pragmatist conception of agency improves upon the more general reliance in studies of organizational practice on a conception of the agent imported from Giddens’ Structuration Theory. The argument is developed with reference to a longstanding debate in organization theory— the debate over the determinants of organizational boundaries—that has grown in importance as companies have responded to market and technological volatility by involving suppliers not just in the making, but also in conceptualizing and designing, the products they sell. It provides a theoretical framework that can help to analyze the place of managerial agency in organizational strategy-making, and to explain why organizational boundaries in many industries today are so unsettled and contested and are likely to remain so into the future.   

Pragmatism, practice, and the boundaries of organization

ZIRPOLI, Francesco
2014

Abstract

The article uses a longitudinal qualitative analysis of key transitions in the relationship between Fiat Auto and a major supplier to integrate a pragmatist model of action into the contemporary “practice” approach to the study of organizations. It builds on an affinity between pragmatist and practice approaches that has been widely recognized, but that has not yet been fully developed with reference to an empirical case. It argues that an analytic reliance on a pragmatist conception of agency improves upon the more general reliance in studies of organizational practice on a conception of the agent imported from Giddens’ Structuration Theory. The argument is developed with reference to a longstanding debate in organization theory— the debate over the determinants of organizational boundaries—that has grown in importance as companies have responded to market and technological volatility by involving suppliers not just in the making, but also in conceptualizing and designing, the products they sell. It provides a theoretical framework that can help to analyze the place of managerial agency in organizational strategy-making, and to explain why organizational boundaries in many industries today are so unsettled and contested and are likely to remain so into the future.   
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/10278/40612
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