The social practice of co-evolving strategy and structure to realize mandated radical change

Jarzabkowski, Paula, Le, Jane and Balogun, Julia ORCID: 0000-0003-2863-004X
(2019) The social practice of co-evolving strategy and structure to realize mandated radical change. Academy of Management Journal, 62 (3). pp. 850-882.

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This paper draws on a longitudinal interpretive case study to develop a theoretical model of how actions by people across an organization coevolve strategy and structure in order to realize a mandated radical change. Mandated change, imposed by a powerful external actor, extends understanding of the dynamics of radical change. While other studies have examined how unintended consequences shape the way radical change is realized, under mandated change, actors focus on bringing about the change in ways that will be, collectively, considered to realize the intended mandate. Our study, grounded in a practice approach concerning how actions bring about radical change, identifies three different action cycles: performing action cycles, reinforcing action cycles, and reflecting action cycles. Shifts in cycles are triggered by unintended consequences that escalate into breakdowns. Cumulative cycles, arising from the escalation of unintended consequences that lead to breakdowns, are necessary for bringing about a mandated change in strategy and structure. Following breakdown, actors switch to reflecting actions in which they consider the underlying intent of the mandate and how to modify the espoused strategy and structure to bring about that intent.

Item Type: Article
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 01 Aug 2018 09:56
Last Modified: 19 Jan 2023 01:29
DOI: 10.5465/amj.2016.0689
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