Perceiving the Present by Means of the Past: Theorizing the Strategic Importance of Corporate Archives

29 01 2019

AS: I’m pleased to announce the publication of a new book chapter.

Wim van Lent  and Andrew D. Smith , (2019), Perceiving the Present by Means of the Past: Theorizing the Strategic Importance of Corporate Archives, in Torben Juul Andersen , Simon Torp , Stefan Linder (ed.) Strategic Responsiveness and Adaptive Organizations: New Research Frontiers in International Strategic Management (Emerald Studies in Global Strategic Responsiveness, Volume ) , pp.97 – 110

Abstract

It is commonly acknowledged that history matters in strategy. However, the strategy literature mainly discusses history in terms of path dependency, leaving little room for managerial agency, despite growing anecdotal evidence that managers can actively draw on corporate history to improve decision-making. An emerging literature on how managers use the past to give sense to internal and external stakeholders has given rise to a more agent-based approach to history, but while sense-giving is commonly connected to sense-making as a driver of strategic change, the role of history in sense-making remains unexplored. Drawing on the concept of analogical reasoning, this chapter theorizes the connection between corporate archives and managerial sense-making, arguing that analogies drawn from past experience can reduce uncertainty and foster learning. This theory leads to the suggestion that consulting the corporate archive can promote strategic renewal and thus boost performance.

Keywords:
History, path dependency, uses of the past, corporate archives, sense-making, analogical reasoning


Actions

Information

One response

4 02 2019
Steph

Reblogged this on Organizational History Network and commented:
Reblogged from The Past Speaks:

Leave a Reply to Steph Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s




%d bloggers like this: