Organization Theory and Governance for the 21st Century is a core text for the organization theory course that provides students with both theoretical grounding and practical application. The objective of the text is to expose students to post-traditional theory as well as to “operationalize” theory, showing clearly how it's been applied and with what impact. The book first covers the classical foundations of organization theory, beginning with rationalist approaches and the behavioral revolution, and then delving into the diversity of network theory, chaos and complexity, structural-functionalism, and transaction cost economics. The authors then demonstrate how these theories are operationalized; i.e. how they can be applied to various management and administrative functions, including managing individual behavior, affecting organizational change, understanding and shaping group dynamics, and managing organization/environment relations. The final section introduces students to post-traditional theory, links back to classical foundations, and demonstrates how these theories are being applied in organizations involved in governance. Austin and Parkes also discuss the implications and provide critiques of these theories. Valuable case studies bring the material to life; the authors identify both historical contexts and “current expressions,” or contemporary examples of these theories at work. Reflection questions throughout each chapter, end-of-chapter discussion questions, and bolded key concepts facilitate a deeper understanding of the material and prompt students to extrapolate what they've learned and engage in further analysis.
Chapter 1: An Introduction and Orientation to Organization Theory
An Introduction and Orientation to Organization Theory
This book explores the complex topic of public organizations. Organizations are made up of a group or groups of people who are brought together to accomplish ends beyond that which a single individual can achieve alone. Public organizations are distinct in that they must respond to citizens, law, politics, and change in ways different than most private organizations. We build organizations because of what they can do for us. We are born and raised in and then spend most of our lives directly or indirectly affiliated with them. Understanding the way organizations work in an increasingly complex, global, diverse, technological, and changing world is critical to our ability to thrive in ...