Audio slide presentation of “meta-organizing capabilities for sustainable innovation”

I am very excited to introduce you to my latest Elsevier Audio Slide presentation of my paper “Meta-Organizing Firms’ Capabilities for Sustainable Innovation: a Conceptual Framework” published in the Journal of Cleaner Production

Abstract

Organizing practices at the collective level of firms and entrepreneurs, i.e. ‘meta-organizing’, is a necessity for the development and diffusion of sustainable innovations. This paper seeks to build a meta-organization approach of sustainable innovation’s governance. To do so, we conducted a three-stage literature review and analysis to 1) identify organizational capabilities that businesses need to acquire to develop sustainable innovations, 2) uncover attributes of meta-organizations as devices for governance, 3) relate these attributes to the capabilities for sustainable innovations. Our contributions are twofold: first we build a more comprehensive understanding of organizational capabilities, insisting on the overlooked importance of accountability, in addition to existing literature on anticipation, resilience, reflexivity, responsiveness and inclusion. Second, we highlight the key role of meta-organizations in facilitating the meta-governance of these capabilities. We propose a research agenda to further investigate these issues in several families of meta-organizations.

It is available here 

http://audioslides.elsevier.com//ViewerLarge.aspx?source=1&doi=10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.12.028

http://audioslides.elsevier.com//ViewerLarge.aspx?source=1&doi=10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.12.028

Advertisements

Call for Papers for the Inter-Organizational Collaboration-SIG mini-track at BAM2018

Organizations of Organizations – calling for cross-literature insights

Track organizers:
Sanne Bor (Hanken School of Economics and Vaasa University)
Héloïse Berkowitz (CNRS UMR 5303, Toulouse School of Management-Research and Institut Barcelona d’Estudis Internacionals)

Organizations of organizations, such as meta-organizations, multi-partner alliances, consortia, trade associations, business associations, formalized networks, and coalitions, are an important phenomenon in contemporary society. They contribute, among other things, to the creation of standards, the self-steering of industries, sharing of R&D and other major costs, and coordination within and across sectors. These organizations exist in all domains and every single organization – firms, NGOs, universities – is a member of at least one other organization, in a form or another. More often than not, organizations belong to several different ones.

This widespread phenomenon has attracted attention in several literatures from organization studies to strategic management, resulting in a variety of terms being used. The phenomenon itself, i.e. the organization of organizations, however, is not the focus of any literature. This results in a fragmented conceptual understanding and independent, non-inclusive theory developments in silos (Cropper, Ebers, Huxham, & Ring, 2008, 2011). Berkowitz and Bor (2017) recently called for a collaborative effort to strengthen the theoretical basis for understanding these organizations by bringing together these different streams of literature. With this track, we aim to put this call into action.

While there is growing recognition of the features particular to these organizations (see e.g. Ahrne & Brunsson, 2005, 2008), we hope this track will bring new theoretical and practical insights about the consequences of such features. What do these features mean for key organization, administrative, management, political or sociological theories and meta-organization practice? Do they make a difference? If so, how? What empirical work supports this? Successful submissions to the track should explicitly discuss how the paper contributes to meta-organization theory and/or practice. A suggestive list of research questions includes:

  • How do meta-organizations change over time and what are the causes of change?
  • What are the implications of meta-organizations’ specific features on their organizational and managerial dynamics?
  • How do meta-organizations and their members mobilize, acquire, combine and use resources and what are the consequences thereof?
  • Which methods or processes of decision-making are used and how does this affect the meta-organization?
  • How can we measure meta-organizations’ performance and what would be the antecedents of such performance?
  • How may these organizations help to address major socio-environmental challenges such as climate change?
  • How may these organizations facilitate industry or societal transitions to sustainability?

 

Naturally, other perspectives and topics related to meta-organizations are also considered. Further, at the review stage, papers with a less optimal fit to this particular mini track will be considered for inclusion at the main track of the Special Interest Group on Inter-Organizational Collaboration.

 

You can submit a full or developmental paper:

15th January: Paper submission opens

28th February:  Paper submission closes

Find out more on: www.bam.ac.uk/bam2018

 

References

Ahrne, G., & Brunsson, N. (2005). Organizations and meta-organizations. Scandinavian Journal of Management, 21, 429–449.

Ahrne, G., & Brunsson, N. (2008). Meta-organizations. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Berkowitz, H., & Bor, S. (2017). Why Meta-Organizations Matter: A Response to Lawton et al. and Spillman. Journal of Management Inquiry, 1056492617712895.

Cropper, S., Ebers, M., Huxham, C., & Ring, P. S. (Eds.). (2008). The Oxford handbook of inter-organizational relations. Oxford/New York: Oxford University Press.

Cropper, S., Ebers, M., Huxham, C., & Ring, P. S. (2011). Packing more punch? Developing the field of inter-organisational relations. International Journal of Strategic Business Alliances, 2, 153–170.

CoP_BAM2018_IOC-SIG_Organizations of organizations

Meta-organizing firms’ capabilities for sustainable innovation: a conceptual framework

Announcing a publication: Berkowitz (2018), « Meta-organizing firms’ capabilities for sustainable innovation: a conceptual framework », Journal of Cleaner Production, forthcoming

Organizing practices at the collective level of firms and entrepreneurs, i.e. ‘meta-organizing’, is a necessity for the development and diffusion of sustainable innovations. This paper seeks to build a meta-organization approach of sustainable innovation’s governance. To do so, we conducted a three-stage literature review and analysis to 1) identify organizational capabilities that businesses need to acquire to develop sustainable innovations, 2) uncover attributes of meta-organizations as devices for governance, 3) relate these attributes to the capabilities for sustainable innovations. Our contributions are twofold: first we build a more comprehensive understanding of organizational capabilities, insisting on the overlooked importance of accountability, in addition to existing literature on anticipation, resilience, reflexivity, responsiveness and inclusion. Second, we highlight the key role of meta-organizations in facilitating the meta-governance of these capabilities. We propose a research agenda to further investigate these issues in several families of meta-organizations.

 

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/321491104_Meta-Organizing_Firms%27_Capabilities_for_Sustainable_Innovation_a_Conceptual_Framework

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S095965261732958X

Why Meta-Organizations Matter: A Response to Lawton et al. and Spillman

Announcing the publication of :

Berkowitz H. and Bor S., 2017. Why Meta-Organizations Matter: A Response to Lawton et al. and Spillman. Journal of Management Inquiry, OnlineFirst.

In a recent issue in this journal, Lawton et al. and Spillman argue for the importance of studying trade associations, also referred to with the broader term meta-organization. They discuss why meta-organizations matter and why more research is needed on the topic. We fully concur with the authors that meta-organizations constitute an inflating, diverse, and undeniable phenomenon of collective action among organizations and that collective scholarly efforts are necessary to improve our understanding of meta-organizations in their multiplicity. In this article, we shed some light on a body of work already investigating the matter. They constitute what we call the “European School” of meta-organization. We show the relevance of this recent European work for the US–UK-oriented trade association research and aim to bridge the gap between these research traditions by proposing a common research agenda on key topics of resources, forms’ differentiation, coopetition, and their role in sustainability governance.

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/317411102_Why_Meta-Organizations_Matter_A_Response_to_Lawton_et_al_and_Spillman 

Co-constructing regulation: the role of a meta-organization

Last week at Abbé Grégoire Innovation Day, Antoine Souchaud and I presented a paper the role of a meta-organization in the collective construction of regulation in an emerging sector. We look at crowdfunding in France and its structuration by FPF, a sectoral meta-organization.

We had many interesting comments, especially on the deviant dimension of actors who set up a new regulatory framework.

Thanks every one for this great day of conferences !

 

The importance of the concept of meta-organization

Our paper was published in the European Management Review on the concept of meta-organization !

In a seminal paper published in 2005 in the Scandinavian Journal of Management, Ahrne and Brunsson introduced into management studies the concept of ‘metaorganization’, which existed already in other fields such as biology. The two Swedish authors used it to refer to an organization whose members are other organizations rather than individuals. Three years later, they published a book on the topic (Ahrne and Brunsson, 2008). In 2012, independently and without quoting Ahrne and Brunsson, Gulati et al. (2012) used again the notion in an article of the Strategic Management Journal. Meta-organizations include a very broad range of structures that belong to the universe of firms, political institutions and non-profit organizations. Beyond this empirical diversity lies an essential reality, namely the growing importance of collective action among organizations. The significance of this field increases as major contemporary societal problems, such as sustainable development in its environmental, economic and social dimensions, human rights, and corporate social responsibility, call for more collective action at a global level. Therefore, it is no coincidence that the concept of ‘meta-organization’ appeared independently in the mid-2000s…

read more about this important topic here !

Call for Papers – Euram 2016 – SIG Business for Society

We invite you to submit papers to the Track Organizing collective action: meta, partial and temporary organizations (T 01_08)

Collective action among organizations is increasing and needs to take new adaptive forms. Literature has recently started to investigate these flexible organizational devices, ranging from formal meta-organization—organizations which members are themselves organizations (Ahrne and Brunsson 2008, Berkowitz and Dumez 2015)— to more partial or transitory inter-organizational forms such as permanent cooperations, partnerships, projects and so on (Gulati et al. 2012, Jones and Lichtenstein 2008). The degree of partiality (Ahrne and Brunsson 2010) often varies. When collective action among organizations develops, it integrates more or less of several elements among hierarchy, membership, rules, monitoring and sanctions.

Meta-organizations cover international government organizations such as WTO and non-governmental such as Star Alliance, FIFA, CEMS, etc. Transitory organizations describe energy megaprojects, inter-organizational collaborations, and world sports events coordination. Reasons to set these up are numerous, from the need for collective CSR, to standardization, governance of transnational projects, collaboration between consumer associations, etc. We welcome case studies with strong theoretical implications, covering the empirical diversity: organization among firms, among stakeholders such as NGO, governments, municipalities, temporary organizations, social movements, standardization, etc.

We want to investigate these manageable types of cooperation. Our current understanding of collective action involving organizations is limited by the lack of a strong theorizing to conceptualize rationale, dynamics and processes of collective action organizing. Especially, the creation process of meta-organizations and other forms is not well known: from the decision process (creating an organization of organizations) to the choice of an organizational form (partial or complete, formal or informal, profit or non-profit, transitory or permanent…), or of membership (businesses, universities, governments, associations, civil society…). The dynamics of these organizational forms (stability, life and death) and their efficiency are also key topics that papers submitted to the call could address.

We welcome you to join us in Paris in June 2016 !

More information and submission process on Euram website 

Deadline for submission: 12th of January 2016 (2 pm Belgian time)

References

Ahrne, G., N. Brunsson. 2005. “Organizations and meta-organizations”.Scandinavian Journal of Management, 21(4), pp. 429–449.

Ahrne, G., N. Brunsson. 2008. Meta-organizations. Cheltenham, Glos, UK; Northampton, MA, USA, Edward Elgar Publishing.

Ahrne, G., N. Brunsson. 2010. “Organization outside organizations: the significance of partial organization”. Organization 18(1) 83–104.

Ahrne, G., N. Brunsson. 2010. “L’organisation en dehors des organisations ou l’organisation incomplète”, Le Libellio d’AEGIS, 6(1), pp. 1-20

Berkowitz, H., H. Dumez. 2015. “La dynamique des dispositifs d’action collective entre firmes: le cas des méta-organisations dans le secteur pétrolier”. Année Sociologique, 65(2), pp. 333-524.

Gulati, R., P. Puranam, M. Tushman. 2012. “Meta-organization design: Rethinking design in interorganizational and community contexts”. Strategic Management Journal 33(6) 571–586.

Jones, C., B. B. Lichtenstein. 2008. Temporary inter-organizational projects: how temporal and social embeddedness enhance coordination and manage uncertainty. Oxf. Handb. Inter-Organ. Relat. 231–255.

Convenors

Hervé Dumez is research director (CNRS)  director of the CRG (Center in Management Studies), École polytechnique, and director of i3 (the Interdisciplinary Institute of Innovation) that brings together management, sociology and economics research centers from Mines ParisTech, Polytechnique and Telecom Paris. He was visiting professor at M.I.T. (2001) and at Stockholm School of economics (2012). His research focuses on interactions between strategies, market structures and regulation policies. He authored or co-authored more than 50 articles in peer reviewed journals and 10 books, including a last one on qualitative research methodology, which is to be published in English. He is associate editor at the European Management Review.

Nils Brunsson holds the Chair in Management at Uppsala University, Sweden. He has published more than twenty books in the field of organization theory, including “Organizing Organizations” (ed. with J.P. Olsen, 1998) and “Meta-organizations” (with G. Ahrne, 2008). He is affiliated to Score (Stockholm Centre for Organizational Research) where he is currently leading a research program on the organization of markets.

Christina Garsten is professor at the Department of Social Anthropology at Stockholm University and at the Department of Intercultural and Management at the Copenhagen Business School. She is Chair of Score (Stockholm Centre for Organizational Research), which is a centre for multidisciplinary research on the organization of society (www.score.su.se). She was previously Director of Score and Research Director at the same centre. Christina Garsten’s research interests are oriented towards organizational anthropology, with a special focus on globalization processes in corporations and markets. She has done fieldwork in the US, the UK, and Sweden.

Héloïse Berkowitz is a Phd applicant at i3-CRG, Ecole Polytechnique. She graduated from HEC Paris, la Sorbonne and CEMS. Her research deals with sustainable collective strategies and meta-organizations in the energy sector. She is interested in topics such as the performativity of social sciences, interorganizational collective action between firms and stakeholders, and specific transdisciplinary issues such as human rights and oceans’ management