Advanced

Object-control: A study of technologically dense knowledge work

Rennstam, Jens LU (2012) In Organization Studies 33(8). p.1071-1090
Abstract
Drawing on the literature on active objects and combining it with an ethnographic study of engineering work, this paper offers an alternative and complementary understanding of the problem of control in knowledge-intensive work. This problem concerns largely the question of how creative processes of knowing are enabled on behalf of the organization. The dominant response to this question revolves around the idea that when work becomes complex, the management attempts to control the norms and identifications of employees, rather than their behaviours. Through the concept of object-control, the idea is introduced that organizational objects participate on behalf of the organization in processes of knowledge control by interpellating... (More)
Drawing on the literature on active objects and combining it with an ethnographic study of engineering work, this paper offers an alternative and complementary understanding of the problem of control in knowledge-intensive work. This problem concerns largely the question of how creative processes of knowing are enabled on behalf of the organization. The dominant response to this question revolves around the idea that when work becomes complex, the management attempts to control the norms and identifications of employees, rather than their behaviours. Through the concept of object-control, the idea is introduced that organizational objects participate on behalf of the organization in processes of knowledge control by interpellating organizational members; that is, organizational members are invited to interact with the objects and to creatively develop knowledge in order to solve organizational problems. The study covers ground that the established notions of normative control and identity regulation have neglected, and suggests new ways of advancing the scholarship of organizational control by taking the active participation of organizational objects into account. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
object-control, interpellation, organizational control, knowing, knowledge work, objects
in
Organization Studies
volume
33
issue
8
pages
1071 - 1090
publisher
SAGE Publications Inc.
external identifiers
  • wos:000307847100004
  • scopus:84865242345
ISSN
1741-3044
DOI
10.1177/0170840612453527
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
20d4950b-bd17-40ca-9206-5401958f3f98 (old id 2542527)
date added to LUP
2012-05-28 13:44:13
date last changed
2017-10-22 03:23:14
@article{20d4950b-bd17-40ca-9206-5401958f3f98,
  abstract     = {Drawing on the literature on active objects and combining it with an ethnographic study of engineering work, this paper offers an alternative and complementary understanding of the problem of control in knowledge-intensive work. This problem concerns largely the question of how creative processes of knowing are enabled on behalf of the organization. The dominant response to this question revolves around the idea that when work becomes complex, the management attempts to control the norms and identifications of employees, rather than their behaviours. Through the concept of object-control, the idea is introduced that organizational objects participate on behalf of the organization in processes of knowledge control by interpellating organizational members; that is, organizational members are invited to interact with the objects and to creatively develop knowledge in order to solve organizational problems. The study covers ground that the established notions of normative control and identity regulation have neglected, and suggests new ways of advancing the scholarship of organizational control by taking the active participation of organizational objects into account.},
  author       = {Rennstam, Jens},
  issn         = {1741-3044},
  keyword      = {object-control,interpellation,organizational control,knowing,knowledge work,objects},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {8},
  pages        = {1071--1090},
  publisher    = {SAGE Publications Inc.},
  series       = {Organization Studies},
  title        = {Object-control: A study of technologically dense knowledge work},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0170840612453527},
  volume       = {33},
  year         = {2012},
}