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24 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
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mental categories for sorting, organizing and storing experience in memory
phenomenon of interest
one concept selected as a focus for theorizing; related concepts are defined and used to explain that one
a set of concepts and the relationships between them proposed to explain the phenomenon of interest
formation of an idea by mental separation from particular instances
the configuration of smaller units of information into large coordinated units
chunking. (n.d.). WordNet® 3.0. Retrieved September 25, 2007, from website:
multiple perspectives
modern; symbolic-interpretive; postmodern
the metaphysical study of the nature of being and existance
ontology. (n.d.). WordNet® 3.0. Retrieved September 25, 2007, from website:
the belief that something only exists when you experience and give it meaning
the belief that reality exists independently of those who live in it
knowing how you can know
positivist (epistemology)
assumes you can discover what truly happens in organizations through the categorization and scientific measurements of the behavior of people and systems
interpretive (epistemology)
assumes that knowledge can only be created and understood from the point of view of individuals who live and work in a particular culture or organization
Modernism Ontology
Objectivism -- belief in an objective, external reality whose existence is independent of our knowledge of it
Modernism Epistemology
Positivism -- we discover Truth through valid conceptualization and reliable measurement that allows us to test knowledge against an objective world; knowledge accumulates, allowing humans to progress and evolve
Organizations are:
Objectively real entities operating in a real world. When well-designed and managed they are systems of devision and action driven by norms of rationality, efficiency and effectiveness for stated purposes
Focus of Organizational Theory
Finding universal laws, methods and techniques of organization and control; favors rational structures, rules, standardized procedures and routine practices
Symbolic Interpretivism Ontology
Subjectivism -- the belief that we cannot know an external or objective existence apart from our subjective awareness of it; that which exists is that which we agree exists
Symbolic Interpretivism Epistemology
Interpretivism -- all knowledge is relative to the knower and can only be understood from the point of view of the individuals who are directly involved; truth is socially constructed via multiple interpretations of the objects of knowledge thereby constructed and therefore shifts and changes through time
Symbolic Interpretivism Organizations are:
Continually constructed and reconstructed by their members through symbolically mediated interaction. Organizations are socially constructed realities where meanings promote and are promoted by understanding of the self and others that occurs within the organizational context
Symbolic Interpretivism
Focus of Organizational Theory
Describing how people give meaning and order to their experience within specific contexts, through interpretive and symbolic acts, forms, and processes
Postmodernism Ontology
Postmodernism -- the belief that the world appears through language and is situated in discourse; what is spoken of exists, therefore everything that exists is a text to be read or performed
Postmodernism Epistemology
Postmodernism -- knowledge cannot be an accurate account of Truth because meanings cannot be fixed; there is no independent reality; there are no facts, only interpretations; knowledge is a power play
Postmodernism Organizations are:
Sites for enacting relations, oppression, irrationality, communicative distortion--or arenas of fun and playful irony. Organizations are texts produced by and in language; we can rewrite them so as to emancipate ourselves from human folly and degradation
Postmodernism Focus of Organization Theory
Deconstructing organizational texts; destabilizing managerial ideologies and modernist modes of organizing and theorizing; revealing marginalized and oppressed viewpoints; encouraging reflexive and inclusive forms of theorizing and organizing