Organizations Evolving

Front Cover
"Howard Aldrich and Martin Ruef's tour de force shows us how the evolutionary approach can explain change not only in organizational populations, but within sectors and within organizations. Aldrich and Ruef display an astonishing command of the management literature, using vivid illustrations from cutting edge research to show how the processes of variation, selection, retention, and struggle operate within organizations and across them. A lucid and engaging book that should appeal both to the newcomer to organization theory and to the old pro."
- Frank Dobbin, Harvard University


A keenly anticipated Second Edition of an award winning classic, Organizations Evolving presents a sophisticated evolutionary view of key organizational paradigms that will give readers a unified understanding of modern organizations.

This Second Edition is up-to-date in its survey of the literature, as well as an overview of the new developments across organization studies. It contains new sections on organizational forms, community evolution and methods for studying organizations at multiple levels.

The field of organization studies contains many contending paradigms that often puzzle and perplex students. This book is a stunning synthesis of the major organizational paradigms under the umbrella of organizational theory. Scholars and students will find it an excellent guide to the strengths and weaknesses of the various approaches, as well as an outstanding review of the best recent empirical research on organizations.

The book includes many helpful features, such as:

" Review questions and exercises that will consolidate reader's learning

" A methodological appendix that assesses common research methods

" Engaging cases that bring principles and concepts to life

This Second Edition is a rich resource for study, discussion and debate amongst organizational scholars and postgraduate students of organizations.

 

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Contents

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Copyright

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About the author (2006)

Howard E. Aldrich received his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan and is Kenan Professor of Sociology, Chair of the Sociology Department, Adjunct Professor of Business at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and Faculty Research Associate at the Department of Strategy & Entrepreneurship, Fuqua School of Business, Duke University. His book, Organizations Evolving (Sage, 1999), won the George Terry Award from the Academy of Management and was co-winner of the Max Weber Award from the OOW section of the American Sociological Association. In 2000, he won the Swedish Foundation on Small Business Award for his research on entrepreneurship. In 2002, he won the J. Carlyle Sitterson Award for Excellent in Freshman Teaching at UNC-CH. In 2011, the graduate students in sociology at UNC-CH gave him their "Best Instructor" award. His most recent book is An Evolutionary Approach to Entrepreneurship: Selected Essays (Elgar, 2012).

While formal organizations (and the institutions that support them) are key features of the contemporary social landscape, sociologists have only recently developed empirical descriptions of the processes that lead to their emergence. My research considers the social context of entrepreneurship from both a contemporary and historical perspective. Large-scale surveys of entrepreneurs in the United States permit me to explore team formation, innovation, exchange processes, and boundary maintenance in nascent startups. My historical analyses address entrepreneurial activity leading to the founding of U.S. medical schools since the 18th century and the organizational transformation of Southern agriculture and industry in the post-bellum period.

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