SFB 504 discussion paper
Lehrstuhl für ABWL und Organisation
L 13, 15, D-68131 Mannheim
How Management Science, Consultancies and Business Companies (Do not) Learn from Each Other. Applying Concepts of Learning to Different Types of Organizations and to Interorganizational Learning
- The central thesis of this paper is that management science, consultancy, and manage-ment
practice are social systems, that are on the one
hand, dependent on each other, but that, on the
other hand, pursue different goals, are subjected
to different norms, and therefore develop their
own rationalities and their own rhetorics.
The consequence is that each system, over time,
builds up and cultivates language barriers vis Ó
vis the respective other systems.
An analysis on the basis of theories of organizational learning shows
that consulting proj-ects especially trigger problems of superstitious
learning and learning under ambiguity, since it is impossible to properly
evaluate their impact on performance. Another result is that consultants
generally do not counterbalance their clients' tendency towards exploita-tion
at the cost of exploration.
Researchers seem to be even less successful than consultants in their
attempts to support learning of organizations. This presents a problem
to them, since as management scien-tists they are under pressure from
practice to demonstrate the usefulness of their science.
The consequence that follows from this analysis is that research and
the development of methods for consulting cannot profit very much
from each other, at least in the field of organization theory, and
should therefore be decoupled to some extent.
- C2 Kieser
- Creation date:
- Publication Status
- Paper to be presented to the SCANCOR Conference ''Samples of the Future'', Stanford, September 20-22
- Downloadable version
- Download titlepage for internal use only
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