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Before and beyond paradigms in organisation studies: Back to the «rough ground»

novitàdigital Before and beyond paradigms in organisation studies:
Back to the «rough ground»
Articolo
rivista STUDI DI SOCIOLOGIA
fascicolo STUDI DI SOCIOLOGIA - 2019 - 1
titolo Before and beyond paradigms in organisation studies: Back to the «rough ground»
autore
editore Vita e Pensiero
formato Articolo | Pdf
online da 03-2019
doi 10.26350/000309_000051
issn 0039291X (stampa) | 18277896 (digitale)
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In The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Thomas Kuhn introduced the notion of «paradigms» to explain how science actually progresses by replacing one paradigm of comprehension with another. Kuhn’s notion of paradigms and the related issues of incommensurability were taken up by organization theorists Gibson Burrell and Gareth Morgan and used to develop a two-by-two paradigmatic framework in their seminal volume Sociological Paradigms and Organizational Analysis. Their timely theoretical intervention led to the proliferation of competing theories of organization and this resulted in what became known as «paradigm wars» in Organization Studies. But what appears to have been overlooked in the paradigm debates is the more intractable problem of representation. Theories propounded rely on abstract representations that are regularly mistaken for reality itself. As a result, genuine progress in understanding the phenomenon of organization is stymied. In this paper we argue for the need to go before and beyond paradigms. This entails returning to the «rough ground» of raw lived experience as the starting point of our enquiry; that «zero degree» of organization which enables us to refashion our comprehension of the world of human affairs.

keywords

Impossibility of representation, Fallacy of misplaced concreteness, Zero degree of organization, Artistic rigor, Pure action

Biografia dell'autore

Robert.Chia@glasgow.ac.uk.