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A historical perspective on fad adoption and abandonment

A historical perspective on fad adoption and abandonment While management is considered relatively immature compared to other social sciences, for over half the lifespan of the discipline, the field has been bombarded with “fads”. For the purposes of this manuscript, fads are defined as “managerial interventions which appear to be innovative, rational, and functional and are aimed at encouraging better organizational performance”. This definition draws on and integrates a number of theorists’ conceptualizations of fads. Notably, however, there is some point at which a fad sufficiently demonstrates its effectiveness in numerous and diverse settings to warrant an evolution from fad status to something which implies more permanence. This issue is addressed in a theoretical model which traces the process of fad adoption using historical bibliometric data. The model offers propositions concerning the precursors, moderators, and outcomes of adoption. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Management History (Archive) Emerald Publishing

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 1999 MCB UP Ltd. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1355-252X
DOI
10.1108/13552529910288109
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

While management is considered relatively immature compared to other social sciences, for over half the lifespan of the discipline, the field has been bombarded with “fads”. For the purposes of this manuscript, fads are defined as “managerial interventions which appear to be innovative, rational, and functional and are aimed at encouraging better organizational performance”. This definition draws on and integrates a number of theorists’ conceptualizations of fads. Notably, however, there is some point at which a fad sufficiently demonstrates its effectiveness in numerous and diverse settings to warrant an evolution from fad status to something which implies more permanence. This issue is addressed in a theoretical model which traces the process of fad adoption using historical bibliometric data. The model offers propositions concerning the precursors, moderators, and outcomes of adoption.

Journal

Journal of Management History (Archive)Emerald Publishing

Published: Sep 1, 1999

Keywords: Management theory; Modelling; Trends

References