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The Socially Constructed Organization


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About the Author

David Campbell was a consultant clinical psychologist based at the Tavistock Clinic in London. In addition to a clinical practice, he developed training courses in supervision, professional doctorate research, and Master's-level family therapy training. He established a long-standing international practice as a management and leadership trainer and organizational consultant.


'It used to be thought that when we talked about organizations and of organizational behavior, there was something already there of a definite character to be talked about. David Campbell, however, takes a quite different social constructionist stance in this book towards organizations and organizational behavior. It is a stance that works in terms of relatedness of everything around us. Thus, as he sees it, an organization is something that "is being constructed continuously on a daily even momentary basis through individual interaction with others". We need a method for socially constructing between us - those of us within it and those of us outside - yet further features, refinements, or elaborations of something fluid and still developing. This is David Campbell's achievement in this book.'The final proof of this book, says Campbell, will be in "whether the ideas and examples are presented in a way that is perceived as being persuasive, trustworthy and ultimately useful". And he has achieved it marvelously well. But this is not just Campbell's task, the consultant's task, but as any good manager in an organization knows - as we all in our daily live know - is the task we all face in attempting to get the others around us to coordinate their actions with ours in achieving something worthwhile. This book will be a resource for all inside and outside organizations to draw on.'- John Shotier, from his Foreword'In a world where organizations consist of less bricks and mortar, and more of virtual networks sometimes straddling the globe, this book is highly relevant. It is increasingly important for those working in and with organizations to be able to think and act in a context in which the social constructed organization is not only a metaphor but is also a new organizational reality. This book provides stimulating and practical ideas for both thinking and acting as a consultant to organizations within this framework. It is also a significant contribution to a development of social constructionist ideas as a distinctive theoretical model for work with organizations.'- Clare Huffington, Director, Tavistock Consultancy Service, London

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