Taking strategy seriously:responsibility and reform for an important social practice

Whittington, Richard, Jarzabkowski, Paula, Mayer, Michael, Mounoud, Eléonore, Nahapiet, Janine and Rouleau, Linda (2003). Taking strategy seriously:responsibility and reform for an important social practice. Journal of Management Inquiry, 12 (4), pp. 396-409.


Strategy is a pervasive and consequential practice in most Western societies. We respond to strategy's importance by drawing an initial map of strategy as an organizational field that embraces not just firms, but consultancies, business schools, the state and financial institutions. Using the example of Enron, we show how the strategy field is prone to manipulations in which other actors in the field can easily become entrapped, with grave consequences. Given these consequences, we argue that it is time to take strategy seriously in three senses: undertaking systematic research on the field itself; developing appropriate responses to recent failures in the field; and building more heedful interrelationships between actors within the field, particularly between business schools and practitioners.

Publication DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1056492603258968
Divisions: Aston Business School
Aston Business School > Economics finance & entrepreneurship
Uncontrolled Keywords: enron,organizational field,social responsibility,strategy discourse,Management of Technology and Innovation,Strategy and Management,Business, Management and Accounting(all)
Full Text Link: http://jmi.sage ... stract/12/4/396
Related URLs: http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL)
Published Date: 2003-12
Authors: Whittington, Richard
Jarzabkowski, Paula
Mayer, Michael
Mounoud, Eléonore
Nahapiet, Janine
Rouleau, Linda

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