ACTUS : Interview with Erhard Friedberg (in French, on the Website of the Centre de sociologie des organisations www.cso.edu)


List of textual contents

List of video clips

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Erhard Friedberg is the leader of one of the most ambitious and successful attempts to make organizational studies accessible, systematic, and fun at the same time. His Multimedia Encyclopedia in Organization Theory. From Taylor to Today (2011) is more than an encyclopedia: is an experiment which link images, voices, faces, documents, archives, in order to place the student or the reader in front of several “layers” of knowledge and learning possibilities. The beginner will find a whole set of instruments and living experiences talking about the most interesting and basic issues of organization theory, The expert will find a valuable set of information, documents, articles, images, precious to continuing her or his research or teaching activities. “From Tailor to today 2010” is no doubt a monumental work which reminds us that organization studies is and has been a living and passionate creation of real persons.
David Arellano-Gault. Professor at CIDE. Mexico

The Multimedia Encyclopedia in Organization Theory
Erhard Friedberg’s Multimedia Encyclopedia in Organization Theory is unique.

Its 233 video clips offer a structured encounter with those who made organization theory. 31* of the most eminent organization theorists recount their explorations and findings, and illustrate their reasoning in interpreting the unexpected results of their seminal field-studies. Some 300 articles by 59 American and European authors document the chronology of 17 approaches to the study of organization, providing an overview of the state of the art in the discipline. Together, these materials paint a concrete and lively picture of the progressive construction of this body of knowledge from Taylor to today.

The academic community will find in this encyclopedia new, exciting material for teaching and learning, making organization theory a human encounter as well as an intellectual adventure. The practitioners of organizations will find evidence of the underlying pragmatism of much organizational analysis and gain insights on many of its implications for the current practice of organization and management.

With the support of the French Ministry of National Education, LEGO SA, and IDRH

Michael HANNAN (American) is known as one of the initiators (with John Freeman) of a new approach to the study of organizations, called “population ecology of organizations” or organizational ecology. This innovative approach wants to transpose the questions and methods of biology to the study of the evolution of organizational forms.
Here, he is talking about what organization theories have to say to a manager.

*WHO ARE THE 31 INTERVIEWEES (by alphabetical order)? - more information

Chris Argyris, Peter M. Blau, Nils Brunsson, Ronald S. Burt, Michel Crozier, Peter Drucker, Mark Granovetter, Michael T. Hannan, David Hickson, Paul R. Lawrence, Charles E. Lindblom, Jay Lorsch, Michael Maccoby, James G. March, Marc Maurice, John W. Meyer, Douglass C. North (Nobel Prize of Economics), Johan P. Olsen, Charles Perrow, Jeffrey Pfeffer, Walter W. Powell, Jean-Daniel Reynaud, Thomas C. Schelling (Nobel Prize of Economics), W. Richard Scott, Philip Selznick, Herbert A. Simon (Nobel Prize of Economics), Arthur L. Stinchcombe, Alain Touraine, Harrison C. White, W. Foote Whyte et Oliver E. Williamson (Nobel Prize of Economics).


- The CHRONOLOGY screen: it displays 17 approaches to the study of organization from Taylor to today.

- 281 ENTRIES to the presentations of 17 approaches and 14 seminal studies, 78 general articles, 92 book-presentations, and 80 biographies.

- 233 VIDEO clips

- A BIBLIOGRAPHY (+1100 titles)

- A QUIZ of some 350 questions

17 Approaches (by alphabetical order) - more information

  • Industrial Democracy

  • Industrial Sociology in France and Germany

  • Neo-institutionalism

  • Network Analysis and the Study of Organizations

  • Organizational psychology

  • Scientific Management

  • Structural Contingency Theory

  • The Carnegie Approach

  • The Dysfunctions of Bureaucracy

  • The Economics of Organization

  • The French School of Organizational Sociology

  • The Human Relations Movement

  • The Interactionist Approach

  • The Movement for the Quality of Work Life

  • The Participatory Approach

  • The Population Ecology of Organizations

  • The Socio-technical Approach

  • 14 Seminal Studies - more information

  • 1930's — The Importance of Sentiments: Elton Mayo and Fritz Roethlisberger at the Hawthorne Plant (1924—1932)

  • 1930's — The Impact of the Group on the Individual: William Foote Whyte in Cornerville

  • 1940's — Cooptation and Boundary Transactions: Philip Selznick at the Tennessee Valley Authority

  • 1940's — Vicious Circles and Latent Functions: Alvin Gouldner at the General Gypsum Company

  • 1950's — Information and Systems Effects: Michel Crozier at the Postal Bank

  • 1950's — Socio-technical Systems: Eric Trist in the Coal Mines of Durham

  • 1950's — The Impact of Automation: A Survey Directed by Pierre Naville (1956—1961)

  • 1950's — Uncertainty and Power: Michel Crozier at the French Tobacco Monopoly (Seita)

  • 1950's — Worker Attitudes toward Technical Change: Jean-Daniel Reynaud and Alain Touraine at the Mont-Saint-Martin Steelworks

  • 1960's — Differentiation and Integration as a Response to Environmental Pressures: Paul Lawrence, Jay Lorsch, and Structural Contingency

  • 1960's — Dimensions of Bureaucracy: Derek Pugh, David Hickson and the Aston Group

  • 1970's — The Force of Weak Ties: Mark Granovetter's Network Analysis

  • 1970's — The Ritual Dimension of Formal Structure: The Studies of John W. Meyer, W. Richard Scott, et alii

  • 1980's — “The Iron cage Revisited,” Institutional Isomorphism and Collective Rationality in Organizational Fields: Paul DiMaggio and Walter W. Powell


    What do we call a PATH?

    Suppose you are a teacher who has to prepare specific lectures on organization theory: use this tool for selecting various items from the DVD (clips, texts, pictures, illustrations) that you plan to use in a given lecture. These sets of pedagogical resources are what we call "paths."

    For example: you need clips on decision-making for your course on decision-making. Select the video clips you want and build your "decision-making-path." In your lecture, you have just to call back the "decision-making-path" and all the items selected by you are directly available.

    Students can also use this tool for preparing presentations and seminar discussions.

    What is the SEARCH engine?

    The search engine allows the user to extract the textual or video data linked to a THEME or/and to an AUTHOR among the 281 references of the encyclopedia and its 233 video clips.

    The SEARCH engine allows the user to extract publications of the bibliography corresponding to a THEME and/or an AUTHOR.


    Studies (Taylor)

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