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Fenster schliessen

Organization Theories

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Module 1: The Pluralism of Organization Theories

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1.1 Introduction

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Two Diffferent Meanings of the Term "Organization"

  1. Instrumental Meaning
  2. Institutional Meaning
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Instrumental Meaning

something

  • is being organized
    • = activity
    • = function
  • has an organization
    • = result
    • = configuration
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Institutional Meaning

something is an organization

example: NGOs, government, school, university, companies, state, family, military, sport club, church, hospital

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Which aspects characterize an organization? (4)

  • structure
  • actor/agency
  • environment
  • change
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1.2 Organization Theory vs. Organization Theories

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Reasons for the Plurality of Organization Theories

Different

  • objects of research
  • disciplinary approaches
  • ideas of theory building (philosophy of science)
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Function of Organization Theories: Truth vs. Insight

"insight seeking"

"What will matter is how much insight and understanding can be extracted from the entire constellation of theories"

many theories can be true and they are all providing insight (not the same) = it is good to have different theories

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1.3 Organizational Research Paradigms

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Definition of "Paradigm"

"A general perspective or way of thinking that reflects fundamental assumptions about the nature of organizations"

Often several theories within the same paradigm

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Fundamental assumptions (2)

  1. Nature of the society: regulation vs. radical change
  2. Nature of social science: subjective vs. objective
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Paradigms of Organization Research by Burrell and Morgan (Matrix)

Lizenzierung: Keine Angabe
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Modul 2: Max Weber and the Concept of Bureaucracy

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2.1 Biography and Historical Background

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Max Weber (1864 - 1920)

Significance of this work

  • one of the founders of German Sociology (next to Simmel and Tönnies)
  • First studies on organizations
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Historical Context

  • Expansion of capitalism
  • Rationalization of the worldview
  • Growth of the administrative machinery in public & private organizations

= Rationality: Objectivity, Impersonality, Predictability

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2.2 The Concept of the "Ideal Type"

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What is NOT the concept of the "Ideal Type"? (2)

  • seeking to be consistent with reality
  • to be understood as a normative ideal
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What is the Concept of the "Ideal Type"? (1)

heuristic construct for understanding reality ("measuring rod")
e.g. homo economicus, perfect market, bureaucracy

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2.3 Forms of Authority

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Development and Function of Ideal Types

“An ideal type type is formed formed formedby the one-sided accentuation of one or more points of view and by the synthesis of a great many diffuse, discrete, more or less present and occasionally emphasized viewpoint into a unified analytical construct. This mental image brings together certain relationships and events of historical life to form an internally consistent cosmos of conceptual interrelations. In substance, this construct bears the character of an utopie which we arrive at by mentally accentuation certain elements of reality. Historical research faces the taks of determining in each individual case, the extend to which this ideal-construct approximates to or diverges from reality."

- Max Weber

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Power

possibility of imposing one's will upon the behaviour of other persons

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Authority

the chance that certain specific commands will be obeyed by a given group of persons because of the willingness of those to believe in the legitimacy of the claims of the dominant.

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Legitimacy

Rightfulness of system or action in the sense of being perceived as appropriate

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Ideal Types of Authority (3)

  1. charismatic
  2. traditional
  3. legal
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Charismatic Type Authority

leader-follower relationship

Authority resting on devotion to the specific and exceptional sancity, heroism or exemplary character of an individual person, and on the normative patterns or order revealed or ordained by him.

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Traditional Type of Authority

master-servant relationship

Authority restion on an established belief in the sancity of immemorial traditions and the legitimacy of the status of those exercising authority under them.

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Legal Type of Authority

superior-subordinate relationship

Authority resting on the belief in the "legality" of patterns of normative rules and the right of those elevated to authority under such rules to issue commands.

→ pures form: Bureaucracy