Organizational Myopia: Problems of Rationality and Foresight in Organizations

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Cambridge University Press, Feb 14, 2013 - Business & Economics - 259 pages
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Could the terrorist attacks on the Twin Towers have been avoided? What about the recent global financial crisis? Behind these apparently very different events it is possible to identify a common element of organizational myopia - a syndrome that severely limits the capacity of organizations to foresee the effects of their own decisions and to recognize signs of danger or opportunity. Based on several case studies, Organizational Myopia explores the barriers that impede organizations from identifying an effective response to the problems which they have to confront. Using real-world cases, the author investigates the mechanisms that generate myopia in organizations at the individual, organizational and interorganizational level in contexts that are complex, uncertain, ambiguous and changeable. This book will help readers understand how to limit the origins of myopia and therefore increase the capacity of organizations to anticipate and contain unexpected events.
 

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Contents

Tables
1
Cases of myopia
10
Uncertainty and predictability in organizations
64
Figures
75
The mechanisms of organizational myopia
95
the problem of learning
160
Implications for organizational design
189
Epilogue
213
Types of organizational myopia
217
Bibliography
221
Index
246
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About the author (2013)

Maurizio Catino is Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology and Social Research at the University of Milan, Bicocca, Italy. He is the author of From Chernobyl to Linate: Technological Accidents or Organizational Errors? (2006) and Understanding Organizations (2012). He has published several articles on learning from organizational errors and the problem of blame culture, medical error and defensive medicine, and the logics of inquiry in case of disasters. He is senior policy advisor for the Italian Parliamentary Commission on Medical Errors and scientific director of the research program on Human factors and safety culture at the Italian Air Force.

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