The Collegial Phenomenon: The Social Mechanisms of Cooperation Among Peers in a Corporate Law Partnership

Front Cover
This text provides a grounded theory of the collegial form of organization. It is based on a network analysis of a traditional and successful Northeastern US corporate law firm in which partners locked themselves in a co-operative and long-term situation without much hierarchy and formal power differences to enforce their agreements. Members of the firm (partners and asssociates) are portrayed as interdependent entrepreneurs who both build social niches in their firm and cultivate status competition among themselves. They need to engage in such behaviour in order to manage various types of resources that are vital in knowledge-intensive, project-oriented organizations (colleagues' goodwill, professional advice, social support) and to fulfil their commitment to this extremely constraining contract. This behaviour generates informal social mechanisms (generalized exchange, lateral control, oligarchic regulation) on which this type of organization is shown to depend for its self-governance.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

A Structural Theory of Collective Action among Peers
19
Spencer Grace Robbins
52
A Specific Exchange System
91
Economic Performance and Quality Control
132
Too Many Chefs?
170
A Montesquieu Structure
182
A Lateral Control Regime
201
MultiStatus Oligarchs and the Negotiation of Precarious Values
242
Conclusion
267
Appendices
276
Choices of Levers Analysed Separately in Chapter 7
291
Density Table for Figure 8 2
297
267
340
Notes
346
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2001)


Emmanuel Lazega is Professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Lille I, France. Previous positions have included Assistant Professor at the University of Versailles (1993-1999); Postdoctoral Fellow at Yale University (1988-1991); and Researcher at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, Wolfson College, Oxford University (1986-1988)

Bibliographic information