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Research areas

The research at DMO covers a wide variety of areas. For ease of presentation, the research is structured into five different research areas.

Governing organizations - Description

A multitude of formal owners, members, citizens or other stakeholders often try to influence the governance of organizations. These stakeholders face the dual challenge of acting in concert with regard to ”their” organization and construct means of ensuring a measure of control over it. The structures and processes by which this dual challenge is handled are studied in the research area ”Governing organizations”. The area encompasses predominantly qualitative and longitudinal empirical work on corporate, non-profit, and public governance, and the interaction between these. The monitoring, formation and deformation of organizational strategy is empirically investigated with ambitions to understand and explain both content and form, in a wide variety of organizations across the institutional repertoire of modern society.

Governance and Management Studies - Description

Corporate stakeholders/shareholders, face the dual challenge of acting in concert with regard to 'their' organizations and construct means of ensuring a measure of control over them. Research at the center highlights the structures and processes by which this dual challenge is handled. That means that the monitoring, formation and deformation of organizational long-term capabilities is investigated with an ambition to understand and explain the content and (re)production of the developing corporate paths. The accompanying emerging governance regimes – carried both by actors and institutions – are also studied. They include 'internal' (e.g., annual general meetings, nomination committees, boards of directors, etc.) as well as “external” arenas and forces (e.g., capital market actors, hard and soft regulations, [investment] banks, etc).

Leadership and human resources - Description

The research area “Leadership and Human Resources” sets the search light on norms, ideals and images connected to human practices in organizations. It focuses on the role of people in organizations: on issues of power, influence, politics, meaning-creation, identity and culture. Studies are mainly conducted in knowledge-intensive and professionalized realms of organizational life, but other types of industries are also subject to study. The methodologies applied within the research area tend to be micro-oriented, focused on interactions and hence often carried out in-situ in organizations. As they aim at capturing daily practices and meaning attribution, case-based and ethnographically inspired methods such as interviews and participant observation are common within the area.

Managing operations and technology - Description

Research within this area takes as a fundamental starting point how work is actually performed in and between organizations. The research is generally concerned with the design, management, and improvement of organizational processes, with processes being the sequence of activities through which organizations create value. Technology plays an important role for how organizations create value. Understanding how technology is used in and by organizations is therefore a core component of the research. The research within the area often takes a management perspective, and tries to understand the challenges of managing operations and technology. Research takes place in a variety of organizational settings, including public organizations, manufacturing and service firms.

Organizational change - Description

Organizational change is a heterogeneous research area. It encompasses normative studies aimed at improving the capacity of management to shape an organization in a preferred direction. It also includes analytically descriptive studies focused on increasing the general understanding of processes resulting in organizational change. Many studies of organizational change have an idealistic basis, focusing on the development and implementation of immaterial ideas, models and norms. But there is also a substantial amount of more materialistic research focusing on the interrelationship between organizational changes and the change of IT, and other administrative and production technologies. Finally, whereas most studies on organizational change locate the source of change inside the organization, there is a growing interest in how societal actors and trends in the wider environment influence and change organizations.

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