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Managing to beat death: the narrative construction process

Managing to beat death: the narrative construction process Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to introduce narrative construction, a method by which participants produce a narrative to make sense of their organizational context, as well as strategically guide action and decision making. While narrative theory has long‐held that people construct narratives to make sense of, and guide, their experience, narrative construction here entails a deliberate and strategic approach to narrative theory. Design/methodology/approach – This is part of an ethnonarrative approach that includes both a constructionist and interpretive narrative and ethnographic methodology. Findings – Narrative construction has research implications for an ethnomethodology of social construction and empirical observation of narrative enactment. There are practical implications for enabling change and building highly‐coordinated organizations. Originality/value – Narrative construction offers a new qualitative methodology and extends ethnonarrative research. The research setting, a death penalty defense team, is also unique. It also moves narrative theory beyond an interpretive device to a constructionist strategy. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Organizational Change Management Emerald Publishing

Managing to beat death: the narrative construction process

Journal of Organizational Change Management , Volume 24 (4): 22 – Jul 5, 2011

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0953-4814
DOI
10.1108/09534811111144610
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to introduce narrative construction, a method by which participants produce a narrative to make sense of their organizational context, as well as strategically guide action and decision making. While narrative theory has long‐held that people construct narratives to make sense of, and guide, their experience, narrative construction here entails a deliberate and strategic approach to narrative theory. Design/methodology/approach – This is part of an ethnonarrative approach that includes both a constructionist and interpretive narrative and ethnographic methodology. Findings – Narrative construction has research implications for an ethnomethodology of social construction and empirical observation of narrative enactment. There are practical implications for enabling change and building highly‐coordinated organizations. Originality/value – Narrative construction offers a new qualitative methodology and extends ethnonarrative research. The research setting, a death penalty defense team, is also unique. It also moves narrative theory beyond an interpretive device to a constructionist strategy.

Journal

Journal of Organizational Change ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Jul 5, 2011

Keywords: United States of America; Ethnonarrative; Narratives; Ethnography; Change; Death penalty; Decision making

References