Posthumanism in organisational studies seminar and workshop Event as iCalendar

(Management and International Business)

13 March 2018

1 - 2:30pm

Venue: The University of Auckland Business School, Level 3, Room 319, 12 Grafton Road, Auckland, 1010

Please join us for a seminar and conversation on posthumanism in organisational studies. We would like to start this workshop by offering a paper applying such theory to leadership development but then broaden the discussion to discuss post-humanism, non-human, textual and material agency and other post-humanist concepts. We would welcome anyone using such theory and working with other types of data sets to talk to their own work and raise their own questions and insights – and include in this invitation participants with practical leadership development concerns, even if our discussion is not ‘applicable’ yet.

The workshop will be in two parts. The first part centres on the following paper (see below) and the second part on a conversation on post-humanism drawing from the experience, insights and questions of those in the room. People are welcome for either or both parts

Organisational phenomena emerge in and through communicative events (Cooren, Kuhn, Cornelissen, & Clark, 2011) like faculty meetings, test-situations, coaching sessions, lectures, door-way chats, group discussions, exams etc, making visible and observable Latour’s performative dimension of society (1984). These events are never reducible to the performance of the instructor or any single actor. On the contrary we must permit  that a ‘plethora of agencies’ (Cooren, 2012, p. 10), like ‘buildings, strategies, statuses, operations, bodies, conversations, art, photographs, and documents – are co-implicated and co-constituted in organising’ (Cooren et al., 2011, p. 1153).

The study seeks to explicate how the interactions in which the facticity of the personality in leadership development is produced in leadership development unfold in real time and which agents, human and non-humans, take part in this, each with different claims to authority. We argue that the complex distribution and negotiation of authority in real time is a key issue for today’s organisations. The authors investigate how the negotiations that sustain authority at work actually unfold by analysing the ways of talking and acting through which organisational members establish their authority and identities. The authors identify key communicative practices involved in achieving authority and discuss their implications for scholar’s understanding of what authorities are present in leadership development and what they accomplish particularly in terms of the identity and reflexive work associated with leadership development.

The specific focus of this study is an instructor and a participant in a public sector program and the latter’s passage through the leadership development module. The actual test, the immediate coaching session, the follow-up session and the associated written assignment form a series of connected empirical points where it is possible to track the core identity work dimensions of the programme. Our focus is on the interaction of three agents, instructor, participant and text - and the micro-discursive actions that accomplish any such identity work. We understand that such a focus on human and textual agents to be rare if not unique in leadership development research and particularly personality profile studies.

Frank is an instructor and senior advisor with Copenhagen Business School’s executive programs, developing and supervising the School’s leadership offerings. With a training in political science and psychology, Frank experiments with ‘less hierarchical’ (Reynolds, 1999) formats that connects the student’s practices with the activities of the programs, to allow the student a novel engagement with these, through leadership and management theory. Frank is a doctoral student with CBS as well and currently visiting UABS as he is writing up two papers with Brigid Carroll, the one being the text of the seminar and indicative of his research interest.

For more information contact:
Brigid Carroll