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Agency and Change : Rethinking Change Agency in Organizations - Raymond Caldwell

Agency and Change

Rethinking Change Agency in Organizations

Hardcover Published: 24th November 2005
ISBN: 9780415326766
Number Of Pages: 185

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This excellent book remaps the limits and possibilities of change, clearly shifting the focus from outmoded debates on agency and structure to new practice-based discourses on agency and change. Offering readers a selective and critical review of key literature and empirical research, it will help students contextualize this complex subject area and independently evaluate future prospects for effective change agent roles in organizations


Presenting an interdisciplinary exploration of competing discourses, the book uses two overarching conceptual continua: centred agency-decentred agency and systems-processes, thereby allowing a more intensive focus on agency and change.

Well-written with challenging content, this book is essential reading for those interested in the origins, development and future prospects for change agency in an organizational world characterized by increasing complexity, risk and uncertainty.

'Agency and Change remains an important critical analysis of organizational change theory as it faces up to new, complex organizational realities.' - Robert Wapshott for Work, Employment and Society

Series editor's prefacep. vii
Prefacep. ix
Acknowledgementsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
Four discoursesp. 5
Plan of the bookp. 13
A note for readersp. 17
Agency and changep. 19
Introductionp. 19
Centred and decentred agencyp. 22
Systems and processesp. 23
Conclusionp. 26
After Lewin, after modernism: rethinking change agencyp. 28
Introductionp. 28
Rationality and change: from Lewin to Argyrisp. 33
Diffusing expertise: Schein on process consultationp. 39
In search of autonomyp. 45
Reflexivity: redefining knowledge and practicep. 49
Conclusion: after Lewin, after modernismp. 53
Pettigrew and contextualism: organizational change and strategic choicep. 60
Introductionp. 60
Process and processual analysisp. 66
In search of contextsp. 71
Strategic change and strategic choice: leading changep. 77
Theory, practice and engaged scholarshipp. 81
Discussion: the legacy of contextualismp. 84
Conclusion: contextualizing contextualismp. 88
The edge of chaos: complexity theory and organizational changep. 92
Introductionp. 92
Complexity theories: four core conceptsp. 97
Beyond order: from systems to processes of changep. 100
Evolution and adaptivenessp. 107
Systems and agent-based interactionp. 112
Decentred agencyp. 115
Discussionp. 116
Conclusionp. 120
From Foucault to constructionist discourses: change without agency?p. 122
Introductionp. 122
Discourse and the subjectp. 126
Power/knowledge and resistancep. 129
Embodiment and identityp. 133
Self-reflexivity and ethicsp. 137
Discussion: agency and changep. 139
Conclusionp. 145
Things fall apart?p. 149
Future researchp. 150
Things fall apart?p. 162
Postscriptp. 167
Referencesp. 168
Indexp. 183
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780415326766
ISBN-10: 0415326761
Series: Understanding Organizational Change
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 185
Published: 24th November 2005
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.98 x 16.36  x 1.63
Weight (kg): 0.43
Edition Number: 1