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Geopolitics and Garbage Cans: Understanding the Essence of Decision Making in an Interdisciplinary and Psycho-Cultural Perspective

The Garbage Can Model of Organizational Choice: Looking Forward at Forty

ISBN: 978-1-78052-712-3, eISBN: 978-1-78052-713-0

ISSN: 0733-558X

Publication date: 26 October 2012

Abstract

This chapter explores geopolitics, garbage cans, the need for interdisciplinary insight, and the lures and limitations of one-sided mono-disciplinary conceptual models in understanding strategic decision making. We argue that a combination of the garbage can model and Nathan Leites’ psycho-cultural approach to decision making might be useful in giving insights for events and for organizational behavior. As a decision making case, we consider the 1941 decision of the Empire of Japan to declare war on the Allied Powers. We find that there could be useful lines of integration between the garbage can framework and other perspectives in geopolitical decision making. In using a historical example to illustrate the possible integration, we argue that there are inherent limits to single-model decision making approaches. Developing interdisciplinary frameworks for understanding foreign policy decision making may lead to better insights in real-world processes and seems like a step in a fruitful direction.

Citation

Augier, M. and Guo, J. (2012), "Geopolitics and Garbage Cans: Understanding the Essence of Decision Making in an Interdisciplinary and Psycho-Cultural Perspective", Lomi, A. and Harrison, J.R. (Ed.) The Garbage Can Model of Organizational Choice: Looking Forward at Forty (Research in the Sociology of Organizations, Vol. 36), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 431-458. https://doi.org/10.1108/S0733-558X(2012)0000036019

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited