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A socio-material approach to understanding the organization, technology, and society nexus

Chand, Badr-Un-Nisa 2018. A socio-material approach to understanding the organization, technology, and society nexus. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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This thesis suggests that approaches studying the organisation, society and technology nexus have either focused extensively on environment (e.g. Marxist perspectives of organisation and society), or studied organisation and technologies within organisational boundaries (e.g. Gidden’s Structuration or Orlikowski’s Sociomateriality). Secondly, in doing so these approaches have chosen ‘deterministic’ stand points that emphasise a single factor, i.e. economy, technology or human agency as being solely responsible for shaping change in the social world. This thesis proposes that Mutch’s socio-material framework (2013), based on CR, provides a comprehensive toolkit for understanding organisations and technologies in relation to society in three ways: through its separation of social and material, by recognising the importance of technology in this interrelationship, and its call for inclusion of context in such discussions. This thesis suggests that although the Mutch’s socio-material framework identifies the importance of context, it does not capitalise on it completely. In response to this void, this thesis contributes to the existing body of literature in three main ways. Firstly, it proposes and illustrates the utility of economic context and its impact on organisational practices. Secondly, it develops and applies the concept of societal context (through the application of social structures of a class system) to elaborate how organisations and their choice of technologies are embedded in a societal context that has considerable impact on different groups of society and vice versa. Thirdly, this work utilises the concept of affordances to help identify the generative mechanisms that can better explain concurrent events that take place when organisational actors, technology and non-organisational actors interact.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 13 June 2018
Last Modified: 05 Jul 2019 02:05

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