Offering a critical overview of key issues in our understanding of organizations, this book explores current approaches to organization studies, and relates to the concepts of modernity and postmodernity to the realities of organizational structure and context. In surveying alternative perspectives on organizations in terms of ideal types, systems, contingencies, ecologies, cultures, markets and efficiency, Stewart Clegg demonstrates that no single approach is adequate to deal with the real-world variety of organizations that exist and work. Drawing upon unusual and revealing examples - the production of French bread, the Italian fashion industry and "post-Confucian" Asian enterprises - he argues that their success cannot be reduced to "culture", but must incorporate a fuller understanding of the ways in which organizations are constructed and reproduced. This analysis is carried through in a detailed discussion of the debate over why Japanese organizations are so successful.
`Stewart Clegg thrusts the study of organizations towards a truly world view in this tempered and scholarly work. United by its theme of the cultural relativity of organizational analysis, it uses intriguing material notably from Europe and from the nations of the Asian Pacific Rim to take a wide view of ideas and of international differences in organizing and managing' - Professor David J Hickson, University of Bradford
`an excellent book equally in the selection of the themes treated in the enormous amount both of theoretical literature reflected and discussed and in the spread of countries used as empirical examples. Stewart has shown once again his exceptional command of the field of organisation studies despite the many sub-fields that the area now includes, each of which covers considerable theoretical and empirical grounding in its own right... undoubtedly a most impressive achievement and a worthy successor to Frameworks of Power' - Jane Marceau, Professor of Public Policy, The Australian National University
`The breadth of the discussion and depth of analysis would make this a most pertinent work for those interested in a number of areas - economics, international business, finance - as well as organization studies specialists' - The Times Higher Education Supplement
`the (fifth) chapter on `French Bread, Italian Fashion and Asian Enterprise' is one of the most interesting treatments of enterprise behaviour I have read for some time' - Journal of General Management
`It is certainly worth the attention of serious scholars in the field.' - Choice
`stylish, elegantly written work... a rewarding blend of theoretical argument and discussion of concrete examples of organisations, which I am sure will be quickly seen as essential reading for students of organisation studies.... As one might expect from Professor Clegg, his discussion of Weber is extremely good, well read and accurate, as is his discussion of some of the theories of organisations developed since.' - New Technology, Work and Employment
`The significance of this book lies in its informed critique of the narrow modernization of Anglo-American organization studies and its stimulating consideration of the diversity of recent organizational practice (particularly non-Anglo-American). In making this argument, the author gives a timely reminder of the influence of Weber, not only as a significant figure in the development of organization studies but also as an eminent (reforming) theorist of modernity' - Administrative Science Quarterly