Organization studies

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Organization studies (also called organization science or organization theories) is the inter-disciplinary academic field interested in a collective activity, and how it relates to organization, organizing, and management (see e.g. Tsoukas and Knudsen, 2005[1] or Clegg et al., 2006[2]). It has followed numerous 'turns' since its emergence in the 1960s: linguistic turn, spatial turn, practice turn, process turn, materiality turn, communication turn... A turn is a collective direction of research, focused on some coherent sets of concepts, theories, and ideas, which represent a point of bifurcation for the field itself. Most turns in organization studies relate to broader ones in social sciences and humanities. Researchers studying organizations and/or organizing processes have a recurring concern that those who work in organizations do not find organizational research particularly relevant. There is therefore growing interest in the impact of organization studies[3]. Public administrations also, around the world, are adopting massively new organizational models to increase their efficiency and improve public services. The Organization Studies field is becoming more popular also because the borders between a well-defined organization and customers, citizens, businesses and professionals are more and more undefined[4].

With the recent historical turn, there is growing interest in historical organization studies, promising a closer union between organizational and historical research whose validity derives from historical veracity and conceptual rigor, enhancing understanding of historical, contemporary and future-directed social realities[5].

Major academic journals of the field are, among others: Organization Science, Organization Studies and Organization.

Researchers interested in organizations and organizing meet in the context of numerous conferences and workshops: the Academy of Management Annual Conference (in particular the OMT division), the European Group on Organization Studies (EGOS), the Asia Pacific conference on Research in Organization Studies (APROS), the American and European Conference on Organization Studies (LAEMOS), the Organization Studies Summer Workshop, the International Symposium on Process Organization Studies (PROS), the Standing Conference on Organizational Symbolism (SCOS), the Organizations, Artifacts & Practices (OAP) workshop, Organization Science Winter Conference, etc.


  1. ^ Tsoukas, H., & Knudsen, C. (2005). The Oxford handbook of organization theory. Oxford Handbooks Online.
  2. ^ Clegg, S. R., Hardy, C., Lawrence, T., & Nord, W. R. (Eds.). (2006). The Sage handbook of organization studies. Sage.
  3. ^ MacIntosh, Robert; Beech, Nic; Bartunek, Jean; Mason, Katy; Cooke, Bill; Denyer, David (2017-01-01). "Impact and Management Research: Exploring Relationships between Temporality, Dialogue, Reflexivity and Praxis". British Journal of Management. 28 (1): 3–13. doi:10.1111/1467-8551.12207. ISSN 1467-8551.
  4. ^ Casalino, N. (2014). "Learning to Connect: a Training Model for Public Sector on Advanced E-Government Services and Inter-Organizational Cooperation". International Journal of Advanced Corporate Learning (iJAC). 7 (1): 24–31. ISSN 1867-5565.
  5. ^ Maclean, Mairi; Harvey, Charles; Clegg, Stewart R. (2016-10-01). "Conceptualizing Historical Organization Studies". Academy of Management Review. 41 (4): 609–632. doi:10.5465/amr.2014.0133. ISSN 0363-7425.