A Socio-Economic Theory of Organizational Culture

By Mahmud A. Shareef, Vinod Kumar and Uma Kumar.

Published by Journal of the World Universities Forum

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Modern organizational relations are based on power. The organizational process is grounded on domination and control, and the outcome is the oppression of employees. We argue that both postmodernism and critical theory agree on the point that, at late capitalism, modern organizations are gradually becoming a tool of social oppression. However, both theories differ significantly in their epistemological and ontological perceptions on organization, society, and culture. We intend to reveal the concepts on which critical theory is formulated to identify the sources of the organizational power play, disclose patterns of irrationalities, and locate the discrete flow and role of power. Critical theory also reveals the formulate relation of power and capital with organizational employees, defines organizational oppression in terms of power relation, and guides human emancipation from modern organizational suppression. On the other hand, while postmodernism criticizes modernism, its implied purpose is completely different from critical theory. It negates modernism to retrieve and import a new culture for late capitalism. It attempts to create a new society of late modernism that will be consistent with present organizational relations. However, to overcome this power relation – which is based on control, domination, and oppression in modern organization – and to reform the socio-cultural aspect of late capitalism, we need to take an overview of this relation through dialectic conflicts.

Keywords: Critical Theory, Postmodernism, Power, Domination, Control, Emancipation, Dialectic Relation, Modernism, Conflicts

Journal of the World Universities Forum, Volume 1, Issue 1, pp.1-10. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 569.501KB).

Mahmud A. Shareef

Student, Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada

Mahmud A. Shareef is currently a PhD student in Management in Sprott School of Business, Carleton University. He has a background in both engineering and management. His research interest is focused on quality management of e-commerce and e-government. His research has been published in numerous conference proceedings and international journals that include two Best Paper Awards.

Dr. Vinod Kumar

Professor, Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada

Vinod Kumar is a Professor of Technology and Operations Management of the Sprott School of Business (Director of School, 1995-2005), Carleton University. He has published over 150 papers in refereed journals and proceedings. He has won several Best Paper Awards in prestigious conferences, Scholarly Achievement Award of Carleton University for the academic years 1985-1986 and 1987-1988, and Research Achievement Award for the year 1993 and 2001. He is on the editorial board of two international journals. He has also served for several years on the Board of Governors and the Senate for Carleton University.

Dr. Uma Kumar

Professor, Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada

Uma Kumar is a Full Professor of Management Science and Technology Management and Director of the Research Centre for Technology Management at Carleton University. She has published over 120 papers in journals and refereed proceedings. Ten papers have won best paper awards at prestigious conferences. She has won Carleton's prestigious Research Achievement Award and, twice, the Scholarly Achievement Award. Recently, she won the teaching excellence award at the Carleton University. She is the recipient of a number of research grants from reputed research funding agencies.


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