- Subject index
Economy//Society is an accessible introduction to the ways in which economic exchanges are embedded in social relationships. Bruce Carruthers and Sarah Babb tackle big issues and real problems with analytical power and lively ideas. They offer rich and novel insights into such topics as advertising, consumer behaviour, the diffusion of innovations, conflicts in the work place, social inequality and the economic development of nations.
Chapter 4: Organizations and the Economy
Organizations and the Economy
Many of us imagine that the market is a place that privileges economic efficiency above all else. Competition forces people and firms to act in a cold-blooded, profit-maximizing way. If they do not, eventually they or their firm will go bankrupt and be driven from the marketplace. And if the market embodies efficiency, then big bureaucracies seem to characterize just the opposite: ungainly, immobile, tied up in red tape, and weighed down with lots of organizational “fat.” Government bureaucracies in particular have a very bad reputation for too much red tape and paperwork; for incompetence, inflexibility, and overcentralization; and for housing too many anonymous, impersonal, and inefficient bureaucrats. Politicians justify proposals to privatize state-owned companies or to relinquish ...