Lista på research om och resources för decentraliserade organisationer
Under workshoppen den 1e oktober fokuserade vi mestadels på hur en driver en självorganiserad organisation (med utgångspunkt ifrån Blivande och Plato), men mindre på varför. Det kom några frågor om just Varför? decentraliserade och deltagardrivna processer är intressanta och vad för positiv förändring dessa arbetsmetoder kan ge. Här är en lista med intressanta papers och länkar som förhoppningsvis kan ge svar på en del av frågorna:
Self-managing organizations: Exploring the limits ofless-hierarchical organizing
Michael Y. Lee*, Amy C. Edmondson 2017
Link to paper
This paper gives a good overview over existing literature, and is a great starting point for explorations of this topic.
Abstract: Fascination with organizations that eschew the conventional managerial hierarchy and instead radically decentralize authority has been longstanding, albeit at the margins of scholarly and practitioner attention. Recently, however, organizational experiments in radical decentralization have gained mainstream consideration, giving rise to a need for new theory and new research. This paper reviews the literature on less-hierarchical organizing and identifies three categories of research: post-bureaucratic organizations, humanistic management and organizational democracy. Despite this extensive prior work, scholarly understanding of radical decentralization remains limited. Using the term self- managing organizations to capture efforts that radically decentralize authority in a formal and systematic way throughout the organization, we set forth a research agenda to better understand less-hierarchical organizing at its limits.
Enabling Creative Chaos: The Organization Behind the Burning Man Event
Probably the most extensive organizational ethnography made on Burning Man, the event that The Borderland is born from. There are several interesting research projects around The Borderland itself, but unfortunately, not anything that is published yet.
Digital economy and the rise of open cooperativism: the case of the Enspiral Network
Alex Pazaitis, Vasilis Kostakis, Michel Bauwens, 2017
Link to pdf
Enspiral is a very interesting organisation, “the cutting edge of experimentation in participatory organising.” This study dives deep into their inner workings, and the effects.
Abstract: This article explores how autonomous workers/contributors, involved in peer-to-peer relations, can organise their productive efforts so that they have sustainable livelihoods. The discussion is guided by the concept of ‘open cooperativism’, which argues for a synergy between the commons-based peer production movement and elements of the cooperative and solidarity economy movements. To this end, we review the case of Enspiral, a network of professionals and companies that empowers and supports social entrepreneurship. We explore its values, operation and governance as well as the chosen strategies for autonomy and sustainability. Finally, some lessons are summarised for the cooperative and union movement, which point to open cooperativism as an integrated vision.
The Riddle of Heterarchy: Power Transitions in Cross-Functional Teams
Federico Aime, Stephen Humphrey, D. Scott DeRue, Jeffrey B. Paul, 2013
Link to pdf
An interesting analysis of how fluid and easily shifted power structures benefit a team’s performance. This kind of fluid hierarchy is exactly what Plato Ideas and Plato Realities attempt to make possible.
Abstract: In this paper, we develop the concept of a power heterarchy, which is a conceptualization of power structures in groups that is more dynamic and fluid than traditional hierarchical structures. Through a study of 516 directional dyads in 45 teams, we demonstrate that heterarchical structures in which the expression of power actively shifts among team members to align team member capabilities with dynamic situational demands can enhance team creativity. Our results indicate that this positive effect of power heterarchies on team creativity is contingent on the team perceiving the shifts in interpersonal power expressions as legitimate. We discuss the implications of this heterarchical power structure for research on group functioning, power, and legitimacy in organizations.
Why and When Hierarchy Impacts Team Effectiveness: A Meta-Analytic Integration
Lindred L. Greer*, Bart A. de Jong, Maartje E. Schouten, Jennifer Dannals, 2018
Link to paper
A quite data-driven study showing that hierarchy generally slightly hurts a team.
Abstract: Hierarchy has the potential to both benefit and harm team effectiveness. In this article, we meta-analytically investigate different explanations for why and when hierarchy helps or hurts team effectiveness, drawing on results from 54 prior studies (N = 13,914 teams). Our findings show that, on net, hierarchy negatively impacts team effectiveness (performance: ρ = −.08; viability: ρ = −.11), and that this effect is mediated by increased conflict-enabling states. Additionally, we show that the negative relationship between hierarchy and team performance is exacerbated by aspects of the team structure (i.e., membership instability, skill differentiation) and the hierarchy itself (i.e., mutability), which make hierarchical teams prone to conflict. The predictions regarding the positive effect of hierarchy on team performance as mediated by coordination-enabling processes, and the moderating roles of several aspects of team tasks (i.e., interdependence, complexity) and the hierarchy (i.e., form) were not supported, with the exception that task ambiguity enhanced the positive effects of hierarchy. Given that our findings largely support dysfunctional views on hierarchy, future research is needed to understand when and why hierarchy may be more likely to live up to its purported functional benefits.
Why Managers Still Matter
Nicolai J. Foss, Peter G. Klein, 2014
Link to paper
A counterweight to the previous papers, a thoughtful critique of the over-reliance and hype of decentralized decisionmaking, stating the need for traditional hierarchies in many organizational situations. At both Blivande and The Borderland, we strongly believe in hierarchical decisionmaking in some situations and complete decentralization in others. No solution is a one-size-fits-all, but instead needs to be carefully adapted to its context.