Charles Snow on the Evolution of Organizations

JLOS_72ppiRGB_powerpoint[We’re pleased to welcome Charles C. Snow of The Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Snow recently published his article entitled “Organizing in the Age of Competition, Cooperation, and Collaboration” in the November issue of  Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies.]

This article describes how organizations have evolved across three periods of modern economic history. The time in which large-scale organizing began in the United States up until the present can be divided into three eras: the age of competition, age of cooperation, and age of collaboration. The article summarizes my research over the last four decades and covers traditional organizational forms such as the functional, divisional, and matrix structure as well as newer forms such as network organizations and collaborative communities of firms. Organizations evolve as they reconfigure their resources and capabilities to pursue new opportunities and overcome existing challenges. Pioneering organizations develop new organization designs that fit the particular circumstances in their sectors, and the new designs diffuse as managers in other sectors adapt the designs to their own organizations. Overall, the result is organizations of greater complexity but also of greater speed and capability.

You can read “Organizing in the Age of Competition, Cooperation, and Collaboration” from Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies by clicking here. Want to know about all the latest news and research from Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies? Just click here to sign up for e-alerts!


ccs4_bioCharles C. Snow is Professor Emeritus of Strategy and Organization at The Pennsylvania State University. He is the Founding Co-editor of the Journal of Organization Design and currently holds visiting professor positions in Norway, Denmark, and Slovenia.

Evolution of Organizations

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(Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons)

How did organizations become what they are today? Charles C. Snow of the Pennsylvania State University discusses the development of organizations throughout modern history in his scholarly essay entitled “Organizing in the Age of Competition, Cooperation, and Collaboration” from Journal of Leadership and Organizational Studies.

The abstract:

JLOS_72ppiRGB_powerpointThe purpose of this article is to describe how organizations have evolved across three periods of modern economic history. These periods can be called the age of competition, age of cooperation, and age of collaboration. The major organizational forms that appeared in each of the three eras, including their capabilities and limitations, are discussed.

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