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Organizational scepticism, the modern conception of leadership and the obsession with new

Larry D. Terry (College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University, Cleveland, Ohio, USA)
Maxine G. Levin (College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University, Cleveland, Ohio, USA)

Journal of Management History (Archive)

ISSN: 1355-252X

Article publication date: 1 December 1998

Abstract

This essay focuses on institutional leadership in complex public organizations. Using an expanded version of James A. Stever’s organizational scepticism framework, an argument is presented that the concept new occupies a privileged and unique position in the modern conception of leadership. The concept’s status is due, in part, to its intimate relationship with other favorable concepts, most notably progress and radical change. It is argued that the modern fixation with new, progress and radical change is troublesome. The scholarly community is encouraged to commit more intellectual resources to developing alternative models of leadership that recognize the usefulness of, but are not limited by, the underlying values and assumptions of modernity. The model of administrative conservatorship is offered as one such model.

Keywords

Citation

Terry, L.D. and Levin, M.G. (1998), "Organizational scepticism, the modern conception of leadership and the obsession with new", Journal of Management History (Archive), Vol. 4 No. 4, pp. 303-317. https://doi.org/10.1108/13552529810233669

Publisher

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MCB UP Ltd

Copyright © 1998, MCB UP Limited