Sheffield Café Scientifique



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October Café: Is Management theory irrelevant outside airport books and managerial conferences?


Monday 6th October at 19:00 in the Café bar of The Showroom


Is Management theory irrelevant outside airport books and managerial conferences?
by Professor Stephen Wood


Research Chair and Deputy Director, Institute of Work Psychology, University of Sheffield Popular Management books often present ideals and concentrate on sanitized cases. Yet they address an important issue: the quest for more flexible organic, high involving organizations. And they have influenced the spread of managerialism, which has added to the scepticism surrounding management thought. Such concern may not be misplaced if management thought lacks a strong theoretical base. Or is it more that managers are skipping key elements or the devil lies in the details of implementation?


Stephen explores the argument that the problem is the growing distance between management thought and social science. In so doing he presents some of the social science that in fact underpinned earlier popular management writing and how this has progressed, concluding that current recipes for bringing the two fields further together are inadequate and pointing to ways forward.