• Obiettivi e contenuti

      The course is aimed at developing learning skills and critical thinking thus enhancing autonomy and consciousness in the use of organizational theories in the analysis of managerial problems and readiness for further development of knowledgeThe goal of this course is to present, discuss and criticize a number of outstanding organizational theories, enlightening their value and their limits in the framing process of a wide range of organizational problems. Students are expected to develop critical understanding of organization theories and their use in the framing process of a wide range of organizational problems.


      All the main approaches to organization theory are covered: The Scientific Management, Functionalism, Contingency Theory, the work of James Thompson, the various contribution in the field of decision making (Herbert Simon, James March, etc.) and the ones that focus on ambiguities in decision making; the approach of Karl Weick, the Critical Management School, New-Institutionalism, etc. (see text list of articles for details).

      • F.W. Taylor, The Principles of Scientific Management, 1911: Introd. + Ch. 1
      • H. Fayol, Administration industrielle et générale, Dunod, Paris, 1916 (trad. en. General Principles of Management): Ch. 1
      • H.A. Simon, The Proverbs of Administration, in "Public Administration Review", 6:1, 1946, pp. 53-67.
      • T. Parsons, Suggestions for a Sociological Approach to the Theory of Organization, in "Administrative Science Quarterly", 1:1, 1956
      • H.A. Simon, Bounded Rationality in Social Science: Today and Tomorrow, in "Mind & Society, 1, 2000, 1:1, pp. 25-39
      • P. R. Lawrence, J.W. Lorsch, Organization and Environment, Harvard University, 1967: Ch. 8-9
      • J.D. Thompson, Organizations in Action. Social science bases of administrative theory, McGraw-Hill, New York, 1967: Ch. 10
      • M.D. Cohen et alii, A Garbage Can Model of Organizational Choice, in "Administrative Science Quarterly", 17:1, 1972, pp. 1-25
      • K.E. Weick, Organizations as Loosely Coupled Systems, in "Administrative Science Quarterly", Vol. 21, No. 1, 1976
      • P.J. DiMaggio, W.W. Powell, The Iron Cage Revisited: Institl. Isomorph. and Collect. Ration. in Organiz. Fields, in "Am. Sociol. Rev., 48:2, 1983, pp. 147-160
      • C. Grey, The Fetish of Change, in "Tamara: Journal of Critical Postmodern Organization Science"; 2003; 2, 2
      • D. Kahneman, The Surety of Fools, New York Times Magazine, Oct 23, 2011
      • B. Maggi, Can we transmit knowledge? in "TAO Digital Library", 2010

      (*) Minor changes to this list may apply during the course. All materials, however, will be available on Aulaweb.

      URL Aula web
      URL Orario lezioni
  • Chi
  • Come

      Seminar-style discussions.

      Rather than “studying theories”, class work is mostly devoted to “playing with theories”: everybody read the texts before coming to class so that we can discuss issues like: “What are the main organizational issues on which the author concentrate?” “What is the vision of the world behind this theory?” “Do you agree with the author?”, “Do you think that this theory is well equipped in order to interpret contemporary organizational problems?”, and then we can sketch out together specific managerial problems and try to use theories for framing solutions.


      This course does not require a final. Course grades, in fact, are based on the contribution of each to class discussions. Students who do not regularly attend lessons (participation requirement is 10 out of 12 seminars) are required to take an oral examination at the end of the semester.

  • Dove e quando
    • Students interested in this course are strongly encouraged to attend classes.

  • Contatti