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Business and Management
Oxford Brookes Business School
+44 (0) 1865 485799
CLC.1.25, Clerici Building, Headington Campus
Jeff Waistell's main research areas are:
*organisational change (analysing how managers deploy language to shift perceptions and thereby achieve change)
*organisational values (with particular attention to how managers translate values over time)
*aesthetics and sustainability (the aesthetic arguments for environmental protection and sustainable business)
*spirituality (the ways in which managers draw on faiths or other expressions of spirituality to guide organisations).
Jeff's primary methodology is that of discourse analysis and he has specialised in the use of metaphors and hermeneutics (theory and method of interpretation).
*Research Group for Critical International Studies.
*Centre for Internationalisation of the Curriculum and Inquiry Network.
*Europe Japan Research Centre
This study investigates how business leaders dynamically narrate their aspirational ethical leadership identities. In doing so, it furthers understanding of ethical leadership as a process situated in time and place. The analysis focuses on the discursive strategies used to narrate identity and ethics by ethnic Chinese business leaders in Indonesia after their conversion to Pentecostal–charismatic Christianity. By exploring the use of metaphor, our study shows how these business leaders discursively deconstruct their ‘old’ identities and construct their ‘new’ aspirational identities as ethical leaders. This leads to the following contributions. First, we show that ethical leadership is constructed in identity talk as the business leaders actively narrate aspirational identities. Second, the identity narratives of the business leaders suggest that ethical leadership is a context-bound and situated claim vis-à-vis unethical practice. Third, we propose a conceptual template, identifying processes of realisation and inspiration followed by significant shifts in understanding, for the study of aspirational ethical leadership.
A range of stakeholders are interested in organisational values, with demands from consumers, tradeunions and pressure groups. Organisations face the challenge of integrating employees from severalcultures and overcoming value differences. Coupled with this emphasis on organisational values thereis increasing interest in the role of discourse in constituting meaning. This research shows how textsconstitute organisational values. Hermeneutics is used to analyse the texts of the Open University andUK FTSE4good companies. The research shows that organisational values are constituted throughthree hermeneutic circles – fragmentation/integration, conceptuality/contextuality and temporality –that provide an integrated medium for interpreting values. The three hermeneutic circles are mediatedby a fourth: the tropological circle, where metaphor and homonymy fuse horizons, and synecdoche andmetonymy relate parts and whole. Both texts and tropes mediate the transvaluation of organisationalvalues across time. In recontextualising its values the organisation becomes a metaphor of itself.
The argument presented in this paper is that today's workplaces and universities both require and promote individual and collective responsibility for work and that students need to be adequately prepared for this. UK national culture has been characterised as highly individualist. Therefore, internationalisation of home management students in the UK (and other individualist cultures) may require a rebalancing towards collectivity. Ultimately, however, the goal should be to achieve an appropriate balance between individualism and collectivism to prepare the home student to work in diverse national cultures that reflect these dimensions differently. The paper concludes with a research agenda to develop balanced curricula and pedagogy to prepare home management students for their future internationalised lives.
The purpose of this article is to identify pedagogical processes that will support critical management education. It examines the underlying dialectical nature of metaphor that can be harnessed in order to encourage critical thinking in management students. The paper makes particular reference to Paul Ricoeur’s philosophy of dialectics. Gadamer argued that understanding and language have a dialogical structure; this paper contributes to the field by examining how this dialogical process is enacted through metaphor and by drawing out the implications for critical management pedagogy. The originality of the paper is its location of the debate on critical management education in the context of dialectics and metaphor. Its practical value is the identification of dialectical teaching processes that encourage criticality.
This is the second in a series of two papers by the same author on organisational values. The first paper, in the previous issue of Philosophy of Management,1 showed how senior managers interpret texts to constitute organisational values. The research showed that organisational values are constituted through three hermeneutic circles – fragmentation/integration, conceptuality/contextuality and temporality – that provide an integrated medium for interpreting values. The three hermeneutic circles are mediated by a fourth: the tropological circle, where metaphor and homonymy fuse horizons, and synecdoche and metonymy relate parts and whole. Both texts and tropes mediate the transvaluation of organisational values across time. The first paper reported the findings and built a theoretical framework, while this second paper builds on the theoretical and empirical work to consider the implications for management practice