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Durham e-Theses
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Organisational change and the individual

Easterby-Smith, Mark (1979) Organisational change and the individual. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



Organizations and change are pervasive features of modern life, and organizational changes, whether intended or not, are becoming increasingly frequent. Despite its practical significance the field of organizational change lacks widely accepted theories aimed either at the academic observer or the participant in change, which explain what it is and how it takes place. This thesis attempts to develop an understanding of the nature and dynamics of organizational change from both perspectives. The thesis is divided into three main parts. The first part reviews some of the existing theories in the field, and proposes an alternative theory based on the notion of differential rates of change, and which distinguishes between descriptions and explanations of change. This is then elaborated through a review of the literature in the fields of organizational and individual change. The main theory, and ideas derived from it, are extended further and evaluated in the second and third parts of the thesis. Case studies are employed in the second part and survey data used in the third part; both are drawn from nurses facing major changes in a Group of National Health Service hospitals. A number of specific conclusions are reached about the ways change may be effected in organizations, and about the ways people may react to these changes. For instance, the examination of individual reactions to anticipated changes suggested two main areas of response. Affective attitudes towards the change were related most closely to judgements made about future patterns in the organization; whereas coping behaviour was more closely related to perceptions of existing patterns (and opportunities)

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Date:1979
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:18 Sep 2013 10:29

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