Professor Philippe Lorino, Distinguished Emeritus Professor of the Accounting and Management Control Department at ESSEC, won the 2019 Egos Book Award for his book "Pragmatism and Organization Studies" (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018).
Many streams of research in organization and management have criticized the mainstream view of organizations as information-processing structures, controlled through rational representations. In spite of their differences, these critical streams of research share some key theoretical principles: The processual view of organizing as 'becoming', the exploratory and inquiring nature of organizing, the emphasis on the key role of action and action meaning, the interest in the agential power of artefacts and objects, and the interactional or dialogical view of sociality.
This book argues that Pragmatist thought can contribute to those approaches by offering key theoretical resources, both as a general mindset and as a conceptual toolbox. As a general mindset, Pragmatism develops a radical critique of all the dualisms which often hinder organization studies: Thought /action, design /utilization, decision /execution, reality /representation, individual /organizational, to name a few. Pragmatism approaches organizing processes as a form of living and situated experience. As a conceptual toolbox, Pragmatism contributes key concepts for organization and management studies, such as inquiry, habit, semiotic mediation, abduction, trans-action, and valuation.
The book presents the key pragmatist notions and systematically illustrates them with concrete empirical cases. In this way, it makes them more accessible to organization and management scholars and reflexive managers, both to theorize organizations and to transform managerial practices.
About EGOS : EGOS is a scholarly association which aims to further the theoretical and/or empirical advancement of knowledge about organizations, organizing and the contexts in which organizations operate. As a collective, one of its main aims is to maintain and provide a voice for the critical and analytical approaches of its members to the study of organization worldwide.
Picture credit: Eoin Carey