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Foundations of Organization Studies

In this course the focus is on theoretical perspectives pertaining to two major organizational questions.

The first question regards how to govern organizations. Governance is an important topic as it deals with organizational decision-making and the organization of our networked world. To answer this question, one can take an internal or external view. The internal view looks at CEOs and upper echelons of organizations, whereas the external view focuses on the governance of relations with external actors (e.g. suppliers).

The second question is about social evaluation, which is the way that people and organizations learn about themselves by comparing themselves with others. Again, we will take an internal and external view. As to the former, we will look at how status and power hierarchies form in the organization. The external social evaluation view addresses how external institutional pressures influence organizations.

Students will acquire a sound understanding of the selection of current debates in the organization studies field and they will be able to critically apply these insights to a wide range of organizational phenomena and translate them into ideas and designs for empirical research.