Kategorie-Archiv: Kritische Ressourcen & Studien

Imperfection, incompleteness and impermanence in organizational life – CfP for the Standing Conference on Organizational Symbolism 2018

The Standing Conference on Organizational Symbolism 2018 takes place at Meiji University, Tokyo, Japan. The theme for 2018 is Wabi-sabi (侘寂): Imperfection, incompleteness and impermanence in organizational life.

Conference Website: http://scos2018.org

Call for Abstracts for SCOS/ACSCOS Conference (Standing Conference on Organisational Symbolism (SCOS) and Australasian Caucus of Standing Conference on Organisational Symbolism (ACSCOS))

August 17-20 2018 Meiji University, Tokyo, Japan

Don’t imitate me It’s as boring As the two halves of a melon Matsuo Basho

Ring the bells that still can ring, Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack, a crack in everything, That’s how the light gets in. Leonard Cohen

Wabi-sabi is an approach to life based on accepting the transience and imperfection of the world. As a Japanese aesthetic derived from Buddhism, wabi-sabi embraces the wisdom that comes from perceiving beauty in impermanence and incompleteness. What might such advocacy of the harmony to found in the flawed, faulty, and weathered have to do with formal organisations, obsessed as they seemingly are with continually striving for perfection? The very ideal of perfection, as an antithesis of wabi-sabi, is embedded in managerial efforts as diverse as striving for continuous improvement, setting ‘stretch’ targets, managing the performance of ideal employees, promoting organizational cultures of excellence, and even the romanticized perfect bodies of employees. Is it then the case that the managerial aesthetic of organizations is the antinomy of wabi-sabi?

The idea for this conference is to explore how the wabi-sabi aesthetic can offer a counterpoint to the forms of idealization that dominate so much of managerial and organisational thinking. This is an exploration of how ideas from an ancient Eastern tradition might fruitfully be brought to bear on organisational issues, challenges and problems, especially as they are dominated by Western intellectual habits and foibles. Wabi-sabi as a theme explores the imperfect idea of a dividing crack between ‘the East’ and ‘the West’ that we hope conference participants will illuminate with the sort of effervescent creativity and fluid thinking that have characterised SCOS and ACSCOS conferences in the past.

We invite submissions that consider any of the possibilities through which principles of transience and imperfection are present in, or can be made relevant to, organisational life. Central to this is how organisations have long been exemplars of containment that wilfully defy any recognition of the importance of transience, flux, and fluidity. The edifice of knowledge and its insistence on the reduction of difference and undecideability can, however, have disastrous political and social effects. Undoing the desire of such rock solid certainty might just prove to be essential for developing ethical openness to others. Is it then possible that wabi-sabi’s emphasis on transience and imperfection offers a path appreciating ethical relations and challenging oppressive organizational regimes that violate humanity?

The 2018 SCOS/ACSCOS Conference is a joint conference. For the first time the annual SCOS conference will be combined with the ACSCOS conference which was last held in Sydney in 2015. There is also another first, that SCOS has never before been held in an Asian/Pacific country. Pursuing these new dimensions to SCOS will ensure that it is a memorable experience. As part of this the local hosts at Meiji University have arranged numerous activities that we can participate in which will help all delegates directly experience wabi-sabi during the conference.

Contributions may find inspiration from the following list of potential themes:

• The desire for perfection in organisations, careers, and lives

• Mindfulness, organising, managing, leadership, and followership

• Western philosophy’s engagement with Eastern philosophy though, for example, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Irigaray, as well as Eastern philosophy’s engagement with Western philosophy, for example Nishida, Watsuji, and Yuasa, and its implications for organisations

• The idealization of Japanese management practice in Western management theory, in for example kanban (lean just-in-time process), jidoka (stop everything!), babyoke (automated mistake proofing), poka yoke (mistake proofing)

• Imperfection as a new organizational ideal

• Undecidability and the ethics of not-knowing

• Living imperfect lives at work

• Imperfection as lack, critiques of patriarchal organisation

• Western preoccupations with completeness and totality

• An organisational aesthetics of im/perfection and transience

• Eastern and Western ideals of beauty and cultural perfection

• Symbols of imperfection, imperfect bodies, the monstrous

• The politics and ethics of failure

• Impermanence and organising

• Global transitions and transience

• Simplicity and/or quietness in organizations

• Enlightenment (satori)

• Desolation and solitude or liberation from the material world

• Inspiration for wabi-sabi expressed in the arts (music, flower arrangement, gardens, poetry, food ceremonies)


The conference is hosted by Meiji University in Tokyo, Japan. The conference organizers are Masayasu Takahashi (Meiji University, Tokyo, Japan), Masato Yotsumoto (University of Nagasaki, Sasebo, Japan), Toshio Takagi (Showa Women’s University, Tokyo, Japan), Alison Pullen (Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia), Carl Rhodes (University of Technology Sydney, Australia), and Janet Sayers (Massey University, Auckland, New Zealand).


Abstracts of no more than 500 words, in pdf format, should be submitted as e­mail attachments by February 28th 2018 to scosacscos2018@gmail.com. You may also direct any queries to this address. If you need a refereed conference paper in order to satisfy funding requirements for your travel please make this clear on your submission. There are a limited number of bursaries available to assist students to participate in the conference. Please indicate on your abstract proposal if you are a student and if you wish to apply for a bursary.

Open stream

SCOS/ACSCOS 2018 will also have an open stream, allowing for the presentation of general papers that do not fit this year’s conference theme but are of interest to the SCOS/ACSCOS communities. Please identify “open stream” on your abstract, as appropriate.


We also welcome proposals for longer sessions run in a workshop format. Outlines of workshops should be the same length as a paper abstract and should give an indication of the resources needed, the number of participants, the time required, the approach to be taken and the session’s objectives. Please identify “workshop” on your abstract, as appropriate.

New Book: The Spectacle 2.0 – Reading Debord in the Context of Digital Capitalism

The „Society of the Spectacle“ reloaded. Free access to the e-book:



Spectacle 2.0 recasts Debord’s theory of spectacle within the frame of 21st century digital capitalism. It offers a reassessment of Debord’s original notion of Spectacle from the late 1960s, of its posterior revisitation in the 1990s, and it presents a reinterpretation of the concept within the scenario of contemporary informational capitalism and more specifically of digital and media labour. It is argued that the Spectacle 2.0 form operates as the interactive network that links through one singular (but contradictory) language and various imaginaries, uniting diverse productive contexts such as logistics, finance, new media and urbanism. Spectacle 2.0 thus colonizes most spheres of social life by processes of commodification, exploitation and reification. Diverse contributors consider the topic within the book’s two main sections: Part I conceptualizes and historicizes the Spectacle in the context of informational capitalism; contributions in Part II offer empirical cases that historicise the Spectacle in relation to the present (and recent past) showing how a Spectacle 2.0 approach can illuminate and deconstruct specific aspects of contemporary social reality. All contributions included in this book rework the category of the Spectacle to present a stimulating compendium of theoretical critical literature in the fields of media and labour studies. In the era of the gig-economy, highly mediated content and President Trump, Debord’s concept is arguably more relevant than ever.

Tagung „Arbeit – Lebensführung – Nachhaltigkeit“, 25.01.-26.01.2018, Universität Hamburg

Hier der Hinweis auf eine interessante Tagung an der Universität Hamburg.

Aus der Ankündigung:

Die Zukunft der Arbeit muss nachhaltig sein, oder sie wird gar nicht sein!
  • Wel­che Be­griffe nach­haltiger Ar­beit gibt es?
  • Wird die so­zi­alwissenschaftliche Tren­nung von Ar­beit und Leben in einer nach­haltigen Ar­beitsgesellschaft ob­so­let?
  • Wie könn­te ihr Ver­hältnis unter der Be­rücksichtigung so­zi­al-ökologischer As­pekte neu be­stimmt wer­den?
  • Wel­che Kon­sequenzen hat eine ana­lytische Ver­bindung von Ar­beit und Le­ben(-sfüh­rung) für die For­schung?
  • An wel­che em­pi­risch fes­t­stellbaren so­zio-ökonomischen Dy­na­mi­ken ließe sich an­knüpfen?
  • Wel­che Ak­teure und Prak­tiken ­der Le­bensführung sind für die so­zi­al-ökologische Transf­ormation hin zu einer nachhaltigen Ar­beitsgesellschaft eher för­derlich oder blo­ckierend?

Vor dem Hin­ter­grund die­ser­ Fra­gen­ sol­le­n in ei­ner zweitä­gi­gen Kon­fe­renz re­levante Kon­zepte und Ana­lysen zum The­ma nachhaltige Ar­beit/sge­sellschaft vor­gestellt, dis­kutiert und mit­einander in Be­zi­ehung ge­set­zt sowie mög­li­che Ent­wick­lungs­pfa­de­ hin ­zu ­ei­ner­ so­zi­al-ökologisch nach­hal­ti­gen­Tä­tig­keits­ge­sell­schaft ­vor­ge­stell­t wer­den.

Mehr Informationen gibt es hier:


Online-Plattform Organisationspädagogik: Forum-OrgPaed

Hier der Hinweis auf eine neue Online-Plattform für Wissenschaftler*innen in der Promotions- und PostDoc-Phase im Bereich Organisationspädagogik:

Forum-OrgPaed.net ist eine Online-Plattform für Wissenschaftler*innen, die sich mit organisationspädagogischen und verwandten Themen beschäftigen und den Peer-to-Peer Austausch suchen. Die Plattform richtet sich dabei explizit an Personen, die sich aktuell in der Promotions- oder PostDoc-Phase befinden. Forum-orgpaed.net bietet für seine Mitglieder einen geschützten Rahmen und Raum bieten, um über wissenschaftliche Fragestellungen und Belange ins Gespräch zu kommen. Interessierte können sich auf der Seite registrieren und so Teil des Netzwerks werden.

Zur Plattform: https://www.forum-orgpaed.net/

New issue of ephemera: theory & politics in organization – The labour of academia


Issue editors: Nick Butler, Helen Delaney and Martyna Śliwa

The purpose of the contemporary university is being radically transformed by the encroachment of corporate imperatives into higher education. This has inevitable consequences for managerial interventions, funding structures, and teaching and research audits. It also impacts on the working conditions of academic staff in university institutions in terms of teaching, research, administration and public engagement. Starting from this basis, the special issue seeks to explore questions about how the work of scholars is being shaped, managed and controlled under the regime of ‘academic capitalism’ and, in turn, to ask what might be done about it.

Contributors: Sarah Robinson, Olivier Ratle, Alexandra Bristow, Callum McGregor, Jeremy Knox, Paul Stewart, Miguel Martínez Lucio, Finnborg Salome Steinþórsdóttir, Thamar Melanie Heijstra, Þorgerður Einarsdóttir, Craig Brandist, Sverre Spoelstra, Damian Ruth, Ozan Nadir Alakavuklar, Lenora Hanson, Elsa Noterman, Stephen Turner, Anna Boswell, Niki Harré, Sean Sturm, Kirsten Locke, Dominic da Souza Correa, Tim-adical Writing Collective, Francesca Coin, John Mingers, Ajnesh Prasad and Paulina Segarra.

CfP „The Ethics of the Commons“ – Special Issue of the Journal of Business Ethics

Call for Papers

Special Issue of the Journal of Business Ethics

The Ethics of the Commons

Submission Deadline: 15 December 2018

Guest editors Helen Haugh, University of Cambridge, UK, h.haugh@jbs.cam.ac.uk<mailto:h.haugh@jbs.cam.ac.uk>

Marek Hudon, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium, mhudon@ulb.ac.be<mailto:mhudon@ulb.ac.be>

Camille Meyer, University of Victoria, Canada, camillemeyer@uvic.ca<mailto:camillemeyer@uvic.ca>

Ana Maria Peredo, University of Victoria, Canada,             aperedo@uvic.ca<mailto:aperedo@uvic.ca>

Introduction to the Special Issue

The concept of ‘the commons’ has a long history (Sison & Fontrodona, 2012) and during the last three decades has generated increasing excitement in the scholarly literature. A major factor in the surge of interest has been the work inspired by Elinor Ostrom, Nobel memorial prize in economics sciences laureate for 2009, especially when linked to the economic and social crises that have fostered interest in different ways of organizing economic life. Recovering and implementing the concept of the commons has been hailed by scholars and practitioners as a way of creating new collective wealth (Akrivou & Sison, 2016; Bollier & Helfrich, 2014; Tedmanson et al., 2015), and for addressing what are seen as the societal ills created by neoliberalism (Caffentzis, 2010). This is a call for submissions to a special issue of the Journal of Business Ethics aimed at providing an overarching perspective on the ethical dimensions and drivers of the phenomenon labelled ‘the commons’. In its broadest sense, ‘the commons’ is understood to refer simply to resources of many kinds, e.g., open access and public goods, where no individual person has the right to exclude others from enjoying their benefits. Ostrom focuses on the common property regime – a tighter concept of the commons wherein some group succeeds in making a ‘common pool resource’ a shared benefit by establishing the right of exclusion from it and managing it in a way that avoids the infamous ‘tragedy of the commons’ (Ostrom, 1990, 1999; Ostrom & Hess, 2008). This special issue particularly welcomes more bounded conceptualization of the commons. The (re)emergence of a “commons paradigm” (Bollier, 2011) refers explicitly to how civil society organizations enable people to collaborate and share. This paradigm presents a way that is simultaneously novel yet draws also on the deep history of analyzing social practices implemented through cooperation, collective action and solidarity. Collective forms of resource ownership and management are often directed toward the common good in keeping with the ethics of living in a community whose purpose is both individual and collective flourishing (Argandoña, 1998; Haugh, 2007; Melé, 2009, 2012; Peredo & Chrisman, 2006; Sison et al., 2012). In this regard, commons organizations create, transform and legitimize nonprofit and community norms and rules (Bushouse et al., 2016; Marquis & Battilana, 2009; Périlleux & Nyssens, 2017). Some forms of commons require multiple forms of collective action for their management (Ostrom, 1990). These participatory methods generate ethical challenges due to the complexity of their management and collective governance. Others have drawn attention to the way that new commons are being created in many resources and environments (Fournier, 2013; Meyer & Hudon, 2017, and how commons are being ‘enclosed’ and removed from wider access (Bollier, 2003). The idea of ‘commoning’ has become a central concept in determining how commons are created and recognized as a social phenomenon (Euler, 2015; Fournier, 2013; Linebaugh, 2008).

This call seeks papers that examine the ethical landscape of the commons in any and all of these dimensions. Possible Themes and Topics We seek papers that shed light on the ethical foundations and implications of the commons. We welcome original papers from a wide variety of methodological and disciplinary perspectives and invite papers that provide insights into, but not limited to, the following topics:

Topic 1: Conceptualization, Ethics and Rights related to the commons – How does ethics shape the definition and conceptualization of commons? – How do different ethical theories provide descriptive and normative insights into commons? – Property rights, including common property rights, are after all rights. How do the ethical implications of different property regimes compare and influence entrepreneurship and organizing? – For organizations and communities, how do ethical drivers enable collective action in social, environmental and other commons?

Topic 2: Governance of Commons – What are the motivations and mechanisms for cooperation and participation in commons governance and management? – What are the ethical challenges to and limits of collective action and decision-making in commons organizations? – How has the conception, practice and institutionalization of commons evolved over time, and what are the ethical factors that contribute to its evolution and persistence? – How do values and culture regenerate collective practices?

Topic 3: Social and Community Entrepreneurship and Impacts – What insights can a study of the commons offer to social and community entrepreneurship research? – How is social value created through commons organizations? – What are the ethical implications of new commons and new ways of commoning for entrepreneurship? – What are the ethical impacts of commons in housing? Food? Environmental activism? Other commons?

Topic 4: The Commons in a Market Society – Are there differences in the way that private property and common property regimes influence markets? If so, what are the ethical implications? – Do prevailing conceptions of entrepreneurship impinge on the role of the commons as a means of producing and distributing goods, e.g., by new forms of enclosure in items such as traditional knowledge, patents, and the human genome? – Do commons represent an ethical challenge to capitalist-market/neoliberal political systems? Submission Process and Deadlines Authors are encouraged to refer to the Journal of Business Ethics website for instructions on submitting a paper.


The CfP for download as a PDF file: CfP_JBE_The Ethics of the Commons

„Zehn Jahre nach der Finanzkrise – Wirtschaftswissenschaften reagieren träge“ – Beitrag im Deutschlandfunk zur „Pluralen Ökonomik“

Bereits heute lief dieser „Hintergrund“ im Deutschlandfunk. Aus der Ankündigung:

„Vor zehn Jahren hat die Finanzkrise die reale Wirtschaft erschüttert. Doch welche Spuren hat sie an den Universitäten, in der Wirtschaftswissenschaft hinterlassen? Haben sich die Inhalte für die derzeit rund 24.000 Studierenden der Volkswirtschaftslehre verändert?“

Im Beitrag des Deutschlandfunk geht es prominent um die „Plurale Ökonomik“. Insofern sind die Dinge vielleicht nicht ganz so träge, wie der Titel suggeriert. Dass die Wirtschaftswissenschaften mit der VWL ein wenig kurzgeschlossen werden, ist aus meiner Sicht nach allerdings ein Problem der ganzen Debatte. Kritische Management- oder Organisationsforschung bleiben hier außen vor (was allerdings auch an der kritischen Management- und Organisationsforschung selbst liegen mag …).

Hier der Link zum Beitrag:


PhD Course in Critical Management Studies, Lund University, May 2018

Lund University offers a one-week PhD course in Critical Management studies, May 2018, that could be of interest to doctoral students in management, organization and social science with a critical approach.

Here is a short course description and information about application:  Call – Lund PHD Courses 2018

Call for Papers: 13th International Conference on Organizational Discourse, 11th – 13th July 2018, Cass Business School London

Great topic! Great conference!


13th International Conference on Organizational Discourse

“Deception, Demonization and Dissection”

 Cass Business School, City University of London, 11th – 13th July 2018

Call for Papers:


„The 13th Conference is intended to accommodate a rich variety of perspectives on organizational discourse in order to grasp ‘where we are’. This is far from easy. A major analytic theme in organizational discourse has been a focus on the intrinsic ambiguity of discourse and yet we are confronted by an emergent global authoritarianism which paints societies in the starkest shades of black and white. These are quite singular narratives which feed off the truth claims of ‘post-facts’ and ‘alternative facts’ which, in turn, appear to reflect increasing global insecurity and inequality.

Hence, the 2018 theme of ‘deception’ calls for analyses of the ever-expanding litany of authoritarian narratives which have been deployed to legitimise social and political changes which are stripping away the norms, values and practices of social democracy. At the macro-level, ‘conversations’ and ‘debate’ are being replaced by ideological diktat. What were once considered the ‘rational arguments’ of now discredited ‘experts’ have been jettisoned for evangelistic mass meetings demanding the destruction of the ‘Other’.

This links directly to our theme of ‘demonisation’. This has emerged as a core feature of ‘where we are now’. Trump’s ‘wall’ is to be built between all varieties of the ‘Other’ – virtually anyone who is somehow ‘foreign’ to whomever has been imagined as the ‘normal’ citizen have come under scrutiny and discrimination if not attack. This theme calls for work exploring the discursive construction of these Others and how they are now projected as undesirable.

But, of course, discourse has to be enacted and this demands an understanding of socio-economic and political context. And, more importantly, authoritarian demands have not been uncontested. Indeed, there are signs of vigorous if, as yet, unsuccessful resistance. Our third theme, ‘dissection’ is intended to explore ‘where we are going’. It targets analyses of how authoritarian narratives are being discursively translated into social action and social practices and how they are being socially contested.

Overall, we anticipate a wide range of differentiated analyses which explore these troubling times. While recognising the need to clearly acknowledge that ‘things may get worse before they get better’, we remain optimistic that our deliberations can offer a more positive and humane vision of our collective pluralistic futures.“

Call for Papers zum Download: 13th Organizational Discourse CALL FOR PAPERS final

Neue Veröffentlichung in Managementforschung 27(1): „Von anderen Organisationen – Ein Essay über Perspektiven kritischer Organisationsforschung“

Eine kleine Eigenwerbung: Mein Artikel „Von anderen Organisationen – Ein Essay über Perspektiven kritischer Organisationsforschung“ ist nun in der Managementforschung 27(1) erschienen.

Link zum Beitrag: https://doi.org/10.1365/s41113-017-0018-3

Eine Vorabversion findet sich auf Academia und Researchgate:




Der Essay geht von der Beobachtung aus, dass trotz der Allgegenwart von Kritik die kritische
Praxis sich auf einem notorisch schwankenden Grund befindet sowie angesichts propagierter
gesellschaftlicher  Alternativlosigkeiten  und  eines  herrschenden  zynischen  Bewusstseins  als
ein eher naives und trübsinniges Geschäft erscheint. Mit Blick auf die Organisationsforschung
werden deshalb mit der immanenten Kritik, der an Foucault anschließenden Genealogie sowie
der welterschließenden Kritik drei Perspektiven kritischer Organisationsforschung diskutiert,
welche der kritischen Praxis schärfere Konturen verleihen. Mit der welterschließenden Kritik,
welche sich der Sichtbarmachung von Heterotopien, von anderen und alternativen Formen des
Organisierens widmet, wird eine kritische Praxis vorgeschlagen, welche den Gegensatz von
Affirmation  und  permanenter  Kritik  unterläuft  und  so  zu  einer  Revitalisierung  von  Kritik
beitragen kann.

Critical  Management  Studies  ·  Foucault  ·  Genealogie  ·  Heterotopie  ·  Immanente  Kritik  ·
Kritische Organisationsforschung · Welterschließung


The  essay  starts  with  the  observation  that,  despite  the  omnipresence  of  criticism,  critical
practice  is  on  a  notoriously  fluctuating  ground.  Even  more  the  propagated  lack  of  social
alternatives  and  a  dominant  cynical  consciousness  turns  critique  to  a  rather  naive  and  dull business.  Regarding  organizational  research,  the  perspectives  of  immanent  criticism,
Foucault’s  genealogy,  and  critique  as  world-disclosure  are  discussed  to  give  the  critical
practice sharper outlines. With world-disclosure devoted to the visualization of heterotopies,
that is of alternative forms of organization, a critical practice is suggested which undermines
the  opposition  between  affirmation  and  permanent  criticism,  and  thus  contributes  to  a
revitalization of critique.

Critical  Management  Studies  ·  Critical  organization  studies  ·  Foucault  ·  Genealogy  ·
Heterotopia · Immanent critique · World-disclosure