Much of the ‘mystery’ of organizational life is hidden in plain sight in individuals' everyday communications and everyday practices. Ethnographic approaches provide in-depth and up-close understandings of how the everyday-ness of work is organized and how work organizes people in everyday organizational life.
Organizational Ethnography brings contributions from leading scholars in organizational studies that help to develop an ethnographic perspective on organizations and organizational research. The authors explore the special problems faced by organizational ethnographers, from questions of gaining access to research sites to various styles of writing ethnography, the role of friendship relations in the field, ethical issues, and standards for evaluating ethnographic work.
This book will be a useful resource for organizational scholars doing or writing ethnography in the fields of business and management, public administration, education, health care, social work, or any related field in which organizations play a role.
Chapter 2: Ethnographic Practices: From ‘Writing-Up Ethnographic Research’ to ‘Writing Ethnography’
Ethnographic Practices: From ‘Writing-Up Ethnographic Research’ to ‘Writing Ethnography’
When we were asked to write this chapter we talked about our experiences of writing ethnographically which each of us have had over the years. We felt that we had something useful to pass on to others and we agreed with the suggestion made by Wright Mills, when writing about ‘intellectual craftsmanship’ in his classic The sociological imagination, that it is by engaging with ‘conversations in which experienced thinkers exchange information about their actual ways of working’ that emerging researchers can best be helped to develop their craft (1959: 215). We therefore decided to write in this spirit. The two of us would have a series ...