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Metatheorising Transformational Management: A Relational Approach

Metatheorising Transformational Management: A Relational Approach
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Author(s): Mark G. Edwards (University of Western Australia, Australia)
Copyright: 2010
Pages: 24
Source title: Cybernetics and Systems Theory in Management: Tools, Views, and Advancements
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Steven E. Wallis (Director, Foundation for the Advancement of Social Theory, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61520-668-1.ch008


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Corporate management is facing a world full of transformational challenges. How might theory development contribute to a more transformative vision of management? While there have been attempts by theorists to move beyond conventional conceptualizations, more innovative and, in particular, more integrative theoretical frameworks are still needed. Conventional and new paradigm management theories take contending sides in the change debate and often define their approaches in terms of dichotomous oppositions. Using an integrative approach to metatheory building, this article proposes that the application of a relational lens overcomes many common polarities and oppositions present within current theorisings. The relational qualities that emerge from this metatheoretical approach are presented as useful guides for developing innovative theories that address the operational and transformational challenges of 21st century management. The metatheoretical analysis not only provides an integrative framework for exploring more visionary conceptualisations of management it also shows that metatheorising has powerful critical capacities for assessing scientific theories in the social sciences.

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