The Containment of Organisational and Institutional Disputes and Scandals: Utilizing a Trading Zone Approach in the Construction of the Object to Explore Their Hidden Dimensions
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Disputes are an inevitable part of life and every day the media reports on a range of organisational or institutional disputes or scandals. Whilst many cases make it into the public domain and are settled through the courts, many are dealt with behind closed doors as private affairs, making access to information about these disputes difficult and thereby contributing to a lack of understanding about what happens in these conflicts. This thesis seeks to explore the containment of organisational and institutional disputes and scandals. This research contributes to new knowledge in two ways; first through the methodological approach which demonstrates a means of expanding existing research, and second through the findings which provide a clearer picture of relations in organisational disputes and scandals. In order to explore the object which is the containment of organisational and institutional disputes and scandals, the methodological approach adopted in this study utilises Bourdieu’s construction of the object which is polytheistic, employing a number of methods. The study has two main stages each driven by questions about the object. Furthermore, in order to create fluency between each method used in the study, Galison’s trading zone approach was adopted. This method involved finding a common ground between each of the stages so that relevant features could be drawn upon to expand the analysis. The first stage frames the object through two historical analyses, namely an analysis of workplace and economic changes from the1930s to the present, which highlighted changes that contributed to the emergence of the category of workplace bullying. This was followed by an analysis of the emergence of the category of workplace bullying using Hacking’s theories and a sample of 68 workplace bullying documents. The second stage involved an epistemological break from the first stage, and was an empirical study of seven cases of organisational and institutional disputes and scandals which reached the public domain. These cases were examined using Boltanski’s affair model to explore aspects of process, and in the context of Bourdieu’s field theory, to examine other factors that played a role in the containment of the conflicts.
Thesis (PhD Doctorate)
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
School of Education and Professional Studies
Containment in organizations
Containment in institutions