The Orchestra as a Laboratory: In-Between Organizing at Spira Mirabilis

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Symphonic orchestras—“a mélange of musicians, volunteers, and paid staff whose contributions must be closely coordinated” (Allmendinger, Hackman, & Lehman, 1996: 194)—have been of growing interest for scholars of organization for their creative and collaborative performance through projects and their work under pressure. While their resemblance with bureaucratic and professional service organizations has been acknowledged, they have been found also akin to coordinated internal networks of multiple identities (Glynn, 2000; Karmowska & Child, 2014). However, scholars have depicted orchestras as rather established and hierarchical creative organizations that are bound by conventions and are dedicated to the pursuit of ‘superior performance’, as the opening quote suggests. As a consequence, they have paid less attention to their learning potential. Studies of other kinds of collaborative collectives, such as teams in management and education, have demonstrated interesting tensions between learning and performing (Bunderson & Suttcliffe, 2003; Paunova & Lee, 2016).
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2016
Number of pages27
Publication statusPublished - 2016
EventThe 32nd EGOS Colloquium 2016: Organizing in the Shadow of Power - Napoli, Italy
Duration: 7 Jul 20169 Jul 2016
Conference number: 32


ConferenceThe 32nd EGOS Colloquium 2016
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