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Article

Rita Järventie-Thesleff, Minna Logemann, Rebecca Piekkari and Janne Tienari

The purpose of this paper is to shed new light on carrying out “at-home” ethnography by building and extending the notion of roles as boundary objects, and to elucidate…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to shed new light on carrying out “at-home” ethnography by building and extending the notion of roles as boundary objects, and to elucidate how evolving roles mediate professional identity work of the ethnographer.

Design/methodology/approach

In order to theorize about how professional identities and identity work play out in “at-home” ethnography, the study builds on the notion of roles as boundary objects constructed in interaction between knowledge domains. The study is based on two ethnographic research projects carried out by high-level career switchers – corporate executives who conducted research in their own organizations and eventually left to work in academia.

Findings

The paper contends that the interaction between the corporate world and academia gives rise to specific yet intertwined roles; and that the meanings attached to these roles and role transitions shape the way ethnographers work on their professional identities.

Research limitations/implications

These findings have implications for organizational ethnography where the researcher’s identity work should receive more attention in relation to fieldwork, headwork, and textwork.

Originality/value

The study builds on and extends the notion of roles as boundary objects and as triggers of identity work in the context of “at-home” ethnographic research work, and sheds light on the way researchers continuously contest and renegotiate meanings for both domains, and move from one role to another while doing so.

Details

Journal of Organizational Ethnography, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-6749

Keywords

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Article

Saija Katila, Mikko Laamanen, Maarit Laihonen, Rebecca Lund, Susan Meriläinen, Jenny Rinkinen and Janne Tienari

The purpose of this paper is to analyze how global and local changes in higher education impact upon writing practices through which doctoral students become academics…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyze how global and local changes in higher education impact upon writing practices through which doctoral students become academics. The study explores how norms and values of academic writing practice are learned, negotiated and resisted and elucidates how competences related to writing come to determine the academic selves.

Design/methodology/approach

The study uses memory work, which is a group method that puts attention to written individual memories and their collective analysis and theorizing. The authors offer a comparison of experiences in becoming academics by two generational cohorts (1990s and 2010s) in the same management studies department in a business school.

Findings

The study indicates that the contextual and temporal enactment of academic writing practice in the department created a situation where implicit and ambiguous criteria for writing competence gradually changed into explicit and narrow ones. The change was relatively slow for two reasons. First, new performance management indicators were introduced over a period of two decades. Second, when the new indicators were gradually introduced, they were locally resisted. The study highlights how the focus, forms and main actors of resistance changed over time.

Originality/value

The paper offers a detailed account of how exogenous changes in higher education impact upon, over time and cultural space, academic writing practices through which doctoral students become academics.

Details

Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management: An International Journal, vol. 15 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5648

Keywords

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Article

Saija Katila and Susan Meriläinen

This paper acts as a commentary on the paper “Self‐reflexivity scrutinized: (pro‐)feminist men learning that gender matters” (Styhre and Tienari, 2013).

Abstract

Purpose

This paper acts as a commentary on the paper “Self‐reflexivity scrutinized: (pro‐)feminist men learning that gender matters” (Styhre and Tienari, 2013).

Design/methodology/approach

The following discussion seeks to build on Styhre and Tienari's argumentation and points to arguments of agreement and disagreement.

Findings

First, the authors argue that while self‐reflexivity cannot be fully taken into account it would be detrimental to social change to restrict it to accidental, haphazard happenings. Second, they argue that perhaps Styhre and Tienari do not always take self‐reflexivity far enough. In order to increase our understanding of why particular kinds of structural hierarchies take place in academia, it is important to locate these incidents within a system of practices that contribute to the marginalisation/privileging of certain groups of people.

Practical implications

The authors further see it as a researcher's moral obligation to at least attempt to overcome the identity‐related, cultural, political and structural conditions that make self‐reflexivity difficult, tiresome and emotionally constraining. We should encourage ourselves to have an ongoing conversation with our whole self about what we are experiencing as we are experiencing it, not only after a critical incident has taken place.

Originality/value

In conclusion, the authors are more inclined to argue along the lines of Alvesson et al., who see reflexivity as a skill or capacity that can be developed, while remaining in consensus with Styhre and Tienari that it can never be fully under the control of the researcher or practitioner.

Details

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-7149

Keywords

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Book part

Janne Tienari, Rebecca Lund and Alexei Koveshnikov

Our review shows that M&A research fails to discuss questions of gender. In this chapter, we aim to understand this lack of sensitivity to gender in analyzing how M&A…

Abstract

Our review shows that M&A research fails to discuss questions of gender. In this chapter, we aim to understand this lack of sensitivity to gender in analyzing how M&A processes unfold. We discuss strategic and people-oriented M&A research, seek to explain why gender and gender relations are not debated therein, and offer some ideas on how they could be incorporated in the analyses. We also consider the contemporary system of academic publishing for understanding the marginal position of gender research in general. Overall, the chapter paves the way for arguing why the gender perspective would benefit M&A research so that it would become better equipped to address the focal phenomenon as constituted in its social, cultural, and economic context.

Details

Advances in Mergers and Acquisitions
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-090-6

Keywords

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Article

Alexander Styhre and Janne Tienari

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the debate on reflexivity in organization and management studies by scrutinizing the possibilities of self‐reflexivity.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the debate on reflexivity in organization and management studies by scrutinizing the possibilities of self‐reflexivity.

Design/methodology/approach

By means of auto‐ethnography, the authors analyze their own experiences as (pro‐)feminist men in the field of gender studies.

Findings

The authors argue that self‐reflexivity is partial, fragmentary and transient: it surfaces in situations where the authors’ activities and identities as researchers are challenged by others and they become aware of their precarious position.

Originality/value

The paper's perspective complements more instrumental understandings of self‐reflexivity, and stimulates further debate on its limits as well as potential.

Details

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-7149

Keywords

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Article

Sinikka Pesonen, Janne Tienari and Sinikka Vanhala

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to research on gender and corporate boards of directors by focusing on how female board professionals construct particular…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to research on gender and corporate boards of directors by focusing on how female board professionals construct particular notions of accessing and succeeding in boards.

Design/methodology/approach

A discursive perspective is offered, based on conceiving gender as something that is “done” in social interaction. In the spirit of critical discourse analysis, the talk of female board professionals, produced in interviews in the Finnish context, is analyzed in‐depth.

Findings

Two discourses are located in the talk of female board professionals: the discourse of competence and the discourse of gender. It is argued that the discourses constitute a boardroom gender paradox, which is characterized by several contradictory elements. By conceptualizing and illustrating this paradox, the study scrutinizes the elusive ideal of women's large‐scale entry into corporate boards.

Research limitations/implications

Future studies should make use of the insights developed, and apply them to cross‐societal comparative research.

Practical implications

For corporate decision‐makers, the findings suggest a rethinking of how “competence” is defined and applied.

Originality/value

Paradox has rarely been addressed in the literature on gender and corporate boards. Understanding how the women interviewed (re)construct a boardroom gender paradox offers a unique contribution to the literature.

Details

Gender in Management: An International Journal, vol. 24 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-2413

Keywords

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Book part

Marianne Storgaard, Janne Tienari and Rebecca Piekkari

In this paper, we focus on ethnocentrism as a practice that persists among top managers at MNC headquarters and steers their efforts in orchestrating the global network of…

Abstract

In this paper, we focus on ethnocentrism as a practice that persists among top managers at MNC headquarters and steers their efforts in orchestrating the global network of subsidiaries. While the extant literature has viewed ethnocentrism as a detrimental attitude that top management seek to remedy, we offer a different reading. On the basis of our fieldwork in Danish MNCs, we argue that top management may deliberately cling to ethnocentrism. At the same time, however, they silence ethnocentrism and conceal it from view. In turn, people in subsidiaries engage in self-silencing. We argue that this sustained yet concealed and silenced ethnocentrism has important implications for orchestration of the global MNC network.

Details

Orchestration of the Global Network Organization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-953-9

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Article

Janne Tienari, Eero Vaara and Susan Meriläinen

The purpose of this paper is to address gender and management in contemporary globalization by focusing on the ways in which male top managers in a multinational…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to address gender and management in contemporary globalization by focusing on the ways in which male top managers in a multinational corporation (MNC) construct their identities in interviews with researchers.

Design/methodology/approach

Qualitative analysis based on interviews with virtually all top managers in the Nordic financial services company Nordea (53 men and two women).

Findings

It is found that becoming international induces a particular masculine identity for the top managers. In becoming international, however, their national identification persists. The unstability of the MNC as a political constellation leaves room for questioning the transnational identity offered.

Originality/value

This paper's findings suggest that in the global world of business, national identity can also be interpreted as something positive and productive, contrary to how it has been previously treated in feminist and men's studies literature.

Details

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, vol. 29 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-7149

Keywords

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Book part

Janne Tienari, Kari Jalonen and Virpi Sorsa

Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) involving cities and municipalities have received little research attention. This is unfortunate because cities are fundamentally important…

Abstract

Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) involving cities and municipalities have received little research attention. This is unfortunate because cities are fundamentally important in the global economy and their influence is likely to grow further. This chapter takes stock of extant research and offers an agenda for studying city M&A. The authors outline the dominant strategic perspective, and complement it with human and institutional perspectives that help explore these complex phenomena. Finally, the authors consider what the M&A literature at large can learn from studying cities.

Details

Advances in Mergers and Acquisitions
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-599-4

Keywords

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Article

Alexander Styhre and Janne Tienari

– The purpose of this paper is to elaborate on self-reflexivity and, in particular, explore the notion of context in relation to men's reflexivity in academic work.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to elaborate on self-reflexivity and, in particular, explore the notion of context in relation to men's reflexivity in academic work.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is a commentary on an earlier paper published in Equality, Diversity and Inclusion addressing the issue of reflexivity in organization studies and commented on by three different scholars.

Findings

Relating specifically to men doing gender studies research, the authors argue that they are always men in context, and their “privilege” (and reflections on it) needs to be accounted for in situ; in relation to the assumptions, relations, and practices at hand, rather to some abstract and vague “privileges” contained in, and carried by, men as a general category.

Originality/value

The paper seeks to advance a novel understanding of reflexivity not so much anchored in the willful capacity to reflect on scholarly work but as engagement with experiences of exclusion or unexpected outcomes in fieldwork and in interacting with other researchers.

Details

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, vol. 33 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-7149

Keywords

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