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Work and Technological Change$
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Stephen R. Barley

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780198795209

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198795209.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 01 March 2021

How Do Technologies Change Organizations?

How Do Technologies Change Organizations?

(p.25) 2 How Do Technologies Change Organizations?
Work and Technological Change

Stephen R. Barley

Oxford University Press

This chapter proposes a model of when and how new technologies will bring about changes in organizational structures and cultures. It argues that the key to such transformations lies in whether technologies alter roles and role relationships. Unless both roles and role relations change, new technologies are unlikely to have a significant effect on how organizations are structured. To determine whether roles and role relations have changed, it is useful to adopt a dramaturgical approach to analyzing encounters. Specifying the scripts that characterize encounters typical of the setting under investigation is central to such an analysis. The approach is illustrated by means of case studies of medical imaging and of how the Internet has begun to change the way car salesmen related interact with customers.

Keywords:   role, role relations, technology, dramaturgical approach, script, encounter

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