A Sociology of Management in Management Education
Chris Steyaert, Timon Beyes, Martin Parker (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Reinventing Management Education, London: Routledge, 2016, pp. 91–104
29 Pages Posted: 26 Apr 2014 Last revised: 10 Oct 2019
Date Written: April 25, 2014
Treating the sociology of management in management education means first specifying then generalising the notion of management such that students begin to contextualize the complexity and contingency of management and understand the means of communication necessary to meet its expectations. The chapter looks at Erich Gutenberg's ingenious foundation of German Betriebswirtschaftslehre, which calls for economic efficiency and technological efficacy to rule an organisation turned into a Betrieb by bracketing (i.e., suspending) its nevertheless acknowledged complexity. If with respect to other organisations we drop reference to efficiency and efficacy, we come up with a generalised notion of management, understanding it as getting action by blocking action (Harrison C. White). We introduce an understanding of communication to explain the one in terms of the other, and conclude by drawing some consequences for management education, which revealingly begins and ends with students gaining a critical knowledge of themselves moving reflexively within different domains of communication and coming up with ideas about agencies legitimising action, games framing strategies, references owing to systems differentiation and a calculus of uncertainty gained by observing networks.
Keywords: Education, Management, Sociology
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