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organizations as media

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organizations as media

In discussing organizational fashions and metaphors, Naomi Stanford refers to Gareth Morgan and his affect on organizational design. “Gareth’s Morgan’s ebook Images of Organisation (1986),  for instance, provided eight organisational metaphors …” — machine, organism, mind, tradition, political system, psychic jail, flux & transformation, and instrument of domination. Other researchers have added to this listing — icehotel, wonderland, femicide, justice.

In a 2011 interview, Morgan says that there’s yet one more mannequin that he must have included.

But, if I had a single alternative, the metaphor that I most want that I had included could be one primarily based on communications theorist Marshall McLuhan’s view that every one types of know-how are greatest understood as extensions of human senses and that “the medium is the message.” More particularly, the metaphor would discover “Organizations as Media” with a specific concentrate on the transformations created within the wake of phonetic literacy and the rise of latest digital media, significantly the digital types which might be presently unfolding. I imagine this metaphor will put the historical past of formal organizations in new perspective and lift some attention-grabbing questions and challenges on how we are able to anticipate new organizational types and related financial techniques to unfold within the years forward. —Reflections on Images of Organization and Its Implications for Organization and Environment

Our organizations are human-made instruments for getting issues achieved. In A Schoolman’s Guide to Marshall McLuhan (1967), John Culkin stated that, “We become what we behold. We shape our tools and then our tools shape us.” Understanding the metaphors that affect organizational design may also help us perceive when they’re not appropriate for society. Critical considering requires us to query our assumptions, and metaphors usually hand around in the background, inferred as pure.

My own work is considerably influenced by the work of Marshall and Eric McLuhan. I’ve mixed their views on media with the mannequin developed by David Ronfeldt: T+I+M+N — overview, video, original paper (1996). My assumptions thus far are as follows

  1. The three organizing types for society, chronologically — Tribes, Institutions, Markets — are extensively relevant throughout historical past.
  2. Each type builds on the opposite and adjustments it.
  3. The final type is the dominant type — immediately that might be the Market type (keep in mind the results of the 2008 market crash?)
  4. A brand new type is rising — Networks ‚ and therefore the T+I+M+N mannequin.
  5. This type is also referred to as the commons or the noosphere.
  6. I’ve discovered proof that what initiated every new type was a change in human communication media — T+I (written phrase), T+I+M (print), T+I+M+N (electrical/digital).
  7. I imagine we’re presently in between a triform (T+I+M) and a quadriform (T+I+M+N) society, which accounts for a lot of the present political turmoil in our post-modern world.
  8. This mannequin may also help inform us the right way to build better organizational forms for a coming age of entanglement.

organizations as media


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