Epistemes and structures of sensemaking in organizational life
University of Exeter; University of Aberdeen
Journal of Management Inquiry
The issue of organizational sense-making has been much researched and written about in recent years. Yet, how structurally such sense-making attempts are facilitated remains relatively unexamined. In this article, the authors explore the underlying processes to be accomplished, sustained, and extended. `Episteme,' the underlying code of a culture or epoch that governs its language, its logic, its schemas of perception, its values and its techniques, etc., is what makes individual and collective meaning and sense-making possible. In this article, the authors identify three epistemes of organizational sense-making for legitimizing and justifying managerial actions and decision-making within the context of a family-owned newspaper called the Courier. This is done through a study of the justifying narratives employed in the collective sense-making process.
Author's draft published as working paper
Journal of Management Inquiry, Vol. 16, No. 4, 392-406 (2007)