Gareth Morgan On Re-Imagining Images of Organization


Images of OrganizationAs part of the newly published July 2016 issue of Journal of Management Inquiry, in the article entitled “Re-Imagining Images of Organization: A Conversation with Gareth Morgan,” authors Cliff Oswick of City University London and David Grant of UNSW Business School converse with Gareth Morgan about the metaphors he presented in his popular book, Images of Organization (1986). Gareth talks about how the metaphors have changed and how they continue to be relevant to  our understanding organizations.  

The abstract for the paper:

In this article, we review the metaphors presented by Morgan in Images of Organizationand highlight how they simultaneously act as “relatively static reflections” (i.e., they provide a history of organization theory) and “relatively dynamic projections” (i.e., stimulating the formulation of further organizational Current Issue Coverimages). We also discuss the potential for new organizational metaphors and consider two specific metaphors (i.e., the “global brain” and “organization as media”). We also challenge the established punctuated metaphorical process (i.e., a transfer from a metaphorical source domain to an organizational target domain), propose a dynamic perspective of interchange (i.e., source domain to target domain to source domain and so on), and develop the notion of multidirectionality (i.e., two-way projections between target and source domains).

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