Irrespective of whether one thinks of philosophy explicitly, each organizational researcher is a philosopher. A philosophical position is predicated on a variety of approaches relating to ontology, epistemology, methodology, ethics, and political positions. Depending on where one stands with regard to these philosophical building blocks, their orientation may be characterized as positivist, realist, critical-realist, and constructivist, with pragmatist and political considerations weighing in as well. Also, management theories all inhabit the same spectrum of philosophical positions that enrich them and add to their relevance to the world of firms and organizations. This book provides a broad-based commentary on the terrain of philosophy as it pertains to management studies, especially for the relatively unfamiliar organizational theorist.
This book serves as a succinct overview of the field of management philosophy as well as a roadmap for those readers who wish to explore the terrain further. The book argues that all knowledge inquiry invokes philosophy and philosophical thinking, and that the artificial separation between philosophy and social science is fallacious. Just as philosophy is everywhere, so is power, and for better or worse they go hand in hand. Hence, philosophical positions are political positions. The authors do not shy from addressing the politics of their own research practice or the subjects of their inquiry.
Philosophy and Management Studies targets a new generation of management researchers, whose interest in philosophy vastly exceeds their resources to engage with it, partly because of their unfamiliarity with its often mystifying and outsider-unfriendly conventions. It seeks to bridge the chasm between interest in philosophy in organizational studies and knowledge about it. It is not for the trained philosopher or the expert, but for a relative newcomer.
Table of Contents
1. Everyone is a Philosopher 2. Interrogating Concepts 3. Philosophy from Below 4. The Road Ahead for Management and Organizational Philosophy
Raza Mir is Professor of Management at William Paterson University, USA. He is the co-editor-in-chief of the journal Organization.
Michelle Greenwood is Associate Professor in the Department of Management at Monash University, Australia. She is co-editor-in chief of the Journal of Business Ethics.
"This book shows how philosophy and social science are good travel companions. Its message is neat: philosophy is the perfect schema from which to interrogate the use of concepts in management research. What is distinctive is the exploration of management and organizational philosophy from the viewpoint of those who occupy a subaltern position in power-laden arrangements." Prof. Silvia Gherardi, Dipartimento di Sociologia e Ricerca Sociale, University of Trento, Italy
"I’ve been waiting for a book like this for all of my academic life, first as a PhD student and now as faculty who works with PhD students. At a time when management research is waking up to grand societal challenges, this engagement with philosophy may spur much-needed new directions in our field." Suhaib Riaz, PhD, Associate Professor of Management, Telfer School of Management, University of Ottawa, Canada
"This book provides the essential philosophical basis to develop a package of method, theory and style for scholars who want to engage in reflexive, non-traditional organizational research. It is an invaluable guide that will not only help a new generation of management researchers but also change organizational research itself. A must-read!" Maddy Janssens, Professor at the Department of Work & Organisation Studies, KU Leuven, Belgium
"Philosophy is the absent centre of management studies. It pervades all of what we think and feel and do and imagine. It tells us that 'we' is a contested notion, for in time and space ideas differ fundamentally. This book brings philosophy into its rightful position at the heart of management studies and is to be welcomed for the warm illumination that it will provide." Gibson Burrell, Professor of Organisation Theory, University of Leicester, UK
"In an age where management research is increasingly judged by its social impact, it is critical that our work as scholars is built on a strong intellectual foundation. Philosophy is that foundation, and this book introduces its central tenets in an insightful, intelligent and accessible way. Highly recommended for doctoral students and early career researchers, and a timely prompt to thinking for more experienced researchers". Carl Rhodes, Professor of Organization Studies, University of Technology Sydney, Australia