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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1996

Laurie Newman DiPadova

Reviews the roots of management theory, and discusses how, in the early part of this century, an overlooked, different interpretation of Max Weber’s work could have…

Abstract

Reviews the roots of management theory, and discusses how, in the early part of this century, an overlooked, different interpretation of Max Weber’s work could have affected those roots. Examines Lowell L. Bennion’s dissertation, Max Weber’s Methodology, published in 1933, which is the first book‐length interpretation in the English language of Weber’s sociological thought. Maintains that this interpretation of Weber is central to the argument that the greater contribution of Weber to management theory lies in the central role of power and conflict in relationships, and the important question of “Why do people obey?”. Concludes that this view of Weber prompts a rich array of research questions confirming the importance of Weber’s thinking for management scholars today, and demonstrates the relevance of Weber far beyond his contribution of bureaucracy as an efficient organizational form.

Details

Journal of Management History, vol. 2 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-252X

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Article
Publication date: 13 March 2009

Michael Elmes and Eleanor T. Loiacono

The purpose of this paper is to describe the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) interactive qualifying project (IQP) as a unique, project‐based service‐learning…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) interactive qualifying project (IQP) as a unique, project‐based service‐learning opportunity that offers teams of undergraduate students the opportunity to frame and investigate complex, unscripted problems with social and technological dimensions for non‐profit organizations and government agency sponsors.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper discusses the relationship of the IQP to the service‐learning literature, describes the proposal and delivery phases of the IQP, and then offers two short illustrative cases.

Findings

The paper concludes that IQPs teach students how to frame and use background research to investigate unscripted, real world problems. It teaches students to think critically, to improve their presentation skills, and to become more aware of the social and cultural dimensions of technology. For faculty, IQP advising enriches their relationships with undergraduate students and can sometimes lead to co‐authored publications. For the university, the IQP program is a source of positive publicity and good will from project center communities around the world.

Practical implications

The findings of this study might be useful to those schools and faculty interested in starting a service‐learning project program with a technological focus.

Originality/value

Projects can provide a unique service‐learning experience for undergraduate students. By focusing on problems at the intersection of society and technology, the WPI IQP sensitizes engineering and science students to the human dimensions of technology. It teaches students to grapple with unscripted problems that require an extensive background research, rigorous data collection, and thoughtful analysis.

Details

International Journal of Organizational Analysis, vol. 17 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1934-8835

Keywords

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