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Opening the black-box of human agency in global organizational change
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Business Studies.
2008 (English)In: European Institute for Advanced Studies in Managements (EIASMs) 3rd workshop on organisational change & development: advances, challenges & contradictions, Bucharest, Romania, 26-27 September, 2008., 2008Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The purpose of this paper is to explore the role of the human actors in large scale organizational change. In doing so, it opens the black-box of human actors. Organizational change research is pre-dominated by a structure perspective and this paper answers the recent calls for an increased focus on agency. More specifically it investigates where human actors reside, who the actors are and how they exercise agency during organizational change. These questions are explored by following the telecom company Ericsson's global transformation of its F&A unit (Finance and Accounting) from a decentralised structure into a so-called shared-service-center structure. The data collection consists of in-depth interviews and observations. An extensive amount of archival records were gathered from the respondents and observations were conducted. The analysis process was inspired by a grounded theory approach were both induction and deduction was employed iteratively until the point of saturation. The findings exhibit the importance of situated knowledge, cognitive and emotional elements of receptivity and moderating factors such as tools for global organizational change. The case-study also underlines the significance of applying both top-down and bottom-up approaches regarding organizational change. The paper concludes by illustrating how the result invites for a more complex understanding of actors in large-scale global organizational change.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Business Studies
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-106063OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-106063DiVA: diva2:223684
Available from: 2009-06-14 Created: 2009-06-14 Last updated: 2010-11-30Bibliographically approved

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