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Philosophy of Management

Volume 2, Issue 1, 2002
Knowing and Deciding

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1. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 2 > Issue: 1
Editorial: Knowing and Deciding
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2. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 2 > Issue: 1
Sandro Limentani From Paternalism to Managerialism: A Healing Shift?
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Traditionally, medical professionals have taken a paternalistic stance towards their patients and have relied on a traditional approach to medical ethics. In recent years, in Britain, however, a new 'managerialism' has developed in the National Health Service (the NHS). This stresses consumerism and greater patient choice and is changing the relationship between doctors and patients. This paper draws out the implications for patients. It describes the ethical characteristics of the two conflicting approaches and argues the need to stress again the view of the patient as an individual person.
3. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 2 > Issue: 1
Michael Bokeno Communicating Other/Wise: A Paradigm for Empowered Practice
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For all the time and effort expended on empowerment and participation 'programmes', many fail each year. This paper argues that the cause is a faulty view of communication widespread among managers and their teachers: the conduit, transmission model. It frustrates participation and is an ideology of management control. It rests on untenable beliefs about meaning and how language relates to the world. The paper proposes a new model of communication in terms of 'communicating other/wise' and offers examples of how it can be practised in management education and by managers aiming to bring empowered and participatory workplaces into being.
4. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 2 > Issue: 1
Bevan Catley, Campbell Jones Deciding on Violence
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If we were to believe the popular press, it would seem that violence at work is an increasingly pressing concern for employees, employers and legislative bodies. In this paper we offer a set of philosophical reflections on violence, in order to clarify and destabilise some of the assumptions which run through manydiscussions of and practical interventions into, violence in the workplace. Rather than focusing on violence 'as such\ we consider various ways in which actions have been, and could be, represented as being violent. To this end, we identify a range of quite distinct representations of violence, and consider the grounds on which decisions are made about 'what violence really is. Refusing to see violence as a simple, obvious phenomenon or as indeterminate and infinitely open, we seek to deploy a deconstructive reading of decision in order to outline the broad contours of a critique of a certain common sense that sees violence only in individual acts of physical violence.
5. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 2 > Issue: 1
Johannes M. Lehner Metaphors, Stories, Models: A Unified Account of Decisions: Part 1 Making Sense of the Decision Context
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Making decisions, as Peter Drucker put it, 'is the specific executive task'. But the situations in which managers decide can differ sharply. Some involve risk, uncertainty or lack of predictability while others lack clear structure and present decision-makers with ambiguity in some form. And yet, in spite of much research, we still have no unified account to explain how managers make decisions let alone to help them decide effectively. Different research streams specialise in different aspects of judgement and decisio-nmaking (JDM) and produce results which apply in different contexts. Some focus on decisions under risk,some on cases of uncertainty, some on different aspects of ambiguity. Some are objectivist and others interpretive, basing themselves on paradigms which are mutually exclusive. As a result, managers relying on any one of them when making decisions can get only partial help because no one paradigm covers everyaspect of the issues on which they decide.This paper addresses the lack of a unified account. It offers a framework for comparing the different research approaches to JDM and their incommensurable paradigms. It describes the central role of metaphors, stories and formal models when managers make decisions. It adopts a neo-pragmatic perspective which treats all three as special forms of model rather than representatives of opposing paradigms. This in turn makes possible a unified account in which specific functions are assigned to each form of model in specific stages of decision-making; metaphors and stories represent the interpretive paradigm and formal models the objectivist paradigm. Finally, to shape future research, the paper derives five propositions about the use and impacts of metaphors, stories and formal models from an account of how they are actually used by managers making decisions.
6. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 2 > Issue: 1
Christopher J. Cowton On Two-by-Two Grids: Or, the Arkeology of Management Thought
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Two-by-two grids are a popular means of exposition of management thought. In this note such grids are identified with Carroll diagrams, developed by the Oxford mathematician and logician Charles Dodgson. Using this insight, the nature ofthe conceptual tool frequently used by management authors is reflectedupon. Two-by-two grids are a clear means of exposition and can be a valuable vehicle for identifying hitherto neglected aspects of a management issue, but there is also a risk that, in their relatively parsimonious treatment of management topics, they fail to capture important features of practice. Two particular areas of risk are identified and discussed.
7. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 2 > Issue: 1
Sheelagh O'Reilly Reason as Performance: A Manager's Philosophical Diary - Part 3
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8. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 2 > Issue: 1
Norma Romm Responsible Knowing: A Better Basis for Management Science
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What kind of inquiry is management science? This paper compares two accounts - realist-oriented and constructivist-oriented - and proposes a third position. The realist view that scientific inquiry seeks knowledge of realities independent and outside of the knowing process is set against the constructivist view that scientific theorising creates accounts which develop our discourses without claiming knowledge of 'deeper realities. It argues that ultimately we have no way of resolving this long-standing dispute. To move beyond the impasse it proposes a trusting constructivist position, arguing that responsible theorising requires that inquirers develop discursive accountability and that the process of inquiry matters as much as its content. Finally it explores what such a view of accountability would mean for the relationship between scientists or 'professionals' and users of their research findings in organisations.
9. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 2 > Issue: 1
Sandro Limentani NICE, CHI and the NHS Reforms - enabling excellence or imposing control? Edited by Andrew Miles, John R. Hampton, Brian Hurwitz and Clinical Governance and the NHS Reforms - enabling excellence or imposing control? Edited by Andrew Miles, Alison P. Hill, Brian Hurwitz
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