Strategic resource or ideal source? Discourse, organizational change and CSR

Deanna Kemp (Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining, Sustainable Minerals Institute, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Australia)
Julia Keenan (Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining, Sustainable Minerals Institute, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Australia)
Jane Gronow (Rio Tinto, Melbourne, Australia)

Journal of Organizational Change Management

ISSN: 0953-4814

Publication date: 31 August 2010

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine how discourse used as a strategic resource can facilitate change in gender and corporate social responsibility (CSR) policy and practice in a global mining company.

Design/methodology/approach

An existing model of discourse and organizational change was applied to illuminate the contours of a particular organizational change process. This paper draws on empirical data in the form of talk and text in oral and written form.

Findings

The research highlights the challenge of finding the right balance between organizational receptivity and resistance, so that discursive boundaries around gender and CSR can be contested and challenged, but where new concepts and subjectivities are not rejected before they have an opportunity to generate shared meaning within the organization. Findings confirm that the involvement of a range of company personnel, particularly from the operational level, is important for generating knowledge and shared meaning, which can lead to enactment. This aligns with observations made in this journal that the management of meaning as opposed to management of change provides a useful analytical and practical focus.

Originality/value

The paper analyses one of the first attempts by a global mining company to articulate a change agenda for gender and community relations within a CSR framework. Unique insights into the internal world of a global mining company and CSR change processes are provided. The paper utilizes a well‐articulated model that facilitates a discursive analysis of organizational change to advance knowledge and understanding.

Keywords

Citation

Kemp, D., Keenan, J. and Gronow, J. (2010), "Strategic resource or ideal source? Discourse, organizational change and CSR", Journal of Organizational Change Management, Vol. 23 No. 5, pp. 578-594. https://doi.org/10.1108/09534811011071298

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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