Discursivity, Relationality and Materiality in the Life of the Organisation
The field of organisational communication has been rapidly transforming in the wake of the linguistic and discursive turns that have been sweeping across the social sciences since the mid-eighties. These ‘turns’ have prompted organisational communication scholars to look more closely at how they think about communication and its relationship to the organisation and the process of organizing. What has emerged from these reflections is a perspective that proposes communication is not merely something that happens in organisations but is the heart of organizing and therefore actually constitutes the organisation. This perspective, which embraces several sub-threads, is now commonly referred to as the CCO (Communication as Constitutive of Organisation) perspective. This is itself evolving as scholars come to realize that organizing does not just occur at the discursive level. It is inextricably coupled to the material and relational aspects of work – the discourse mutually constitutes relationships between human and non-human bodies that combine to create what we encounter when we participate in organisational life. This book examines the way these three dimensions combine to create organisational outcomes. In doing so, it advances CCO and sociomateriality scholarship and contributes to new ways of thinking about strategy and practice. The series of empirical studies should interest the widely interdisciplinary audience that seeks to understand work, organizing and management. This book was originally published as a special issue of the Communication Research and Practice journal.
Table of Contents
Introduction 1. How things make things do things with words, or how to pay attention to what things have to say 2. A communicative approach to sociomateriality: the agentic role of technology at the operational level 3. Modes of design tools: sociomaterial dynamics of a horticultural project 4. The materiality of discourse: relational positioning in a fresh water controversy 5. A spatial grammar of organising: studying the communicative constitution of organisational spaces 6. Making mundane work visible on social media: a CCO investigation of working out loud on Twitter 7. A communication perspective on organisational stakeholder relationships: discursivity, relationality, and materiality
Colleen E. Mills is Professor of Management at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand and an International Faculty Affiliate at Audencia Business School, France. Her research interests include organisational communication, sensemaking, materiality, and organisational change. She is an executive member and past president of the Australian and New Zealand Communication Association and board member of the International Communication Association.
François Cooren is a Professor of Communication at the Université de Montréal, Canada. His research interests include organisational communication, language and social interaction, and communication theory. He is a fellow and past president of the International Communication Association, Distinguished Scholar of the National Communication Association, and former editor-in-chief of Communication Theory (2005-2008).