Brian T. Pentland

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This article introduces four basic theories that may serve as building blocks for explaining processes of change in organizations: life cycle, teleology, dialectics, and evolution. These four theories represent different sequences of change events that are driven by different conceptual motors and operate at different organizational levels. This article(More)
This paper describes a novel theoretical and empirical approach to tasks such as business process redesign and knowledge management. The project involves collecting examples of how different organizations perform similar processes, and organizing these examples in an on-line ìprocess handbook". The handbook is intended to help people: (1) redesign existing(More)
Using the example of a failed software implementation, we discuss the role of artifacts in shaping organizational routines. We argue that artifact-centered assumptions about design are not well suited to designing organizational routines, which are generative systems that produce recognizable, repetitive patterns of interdependent actions, carried out by(More)
This paper introduces the narrative network as a device for representing patterns of “technology in use.” The narrative network offers a novel conceptual vocabulary for the description of information and communication technologies (ICTs) and their relationship to organizational forms. We argue that as ICTs have become increasingly modular and recombinable,(More)
Task variety is a familiar concept in organization theory and in job analysis. Standardized scales to measure task variety have been developed and shown to be reliable, but results reported here suggest that while these scales may measure the number of different tasks performed, they do not measure variety in work process. Comparing results from the(More)
Current literature on organizational learning tends to be theoretically fragmented, drawing on analogies to individual learning theory or simply using organizational learning as an umbrella concept for many different kinds of organizational change or adaptation. This paper introduces a framework for the analysis of organizations as knowledge systems(More)
This paper describes a novel theoretical and empirical approach to tasks such as business process redesign and knowledge management. The project involves collecting examples of how different organizations perform similar processes, and organizing these examples in an on-line ìprocess handbook". The handbook is intended to help people: (1) redesign existing(More)
This paper uses data on invoice processing in four organizations to distinguish empirically between two competing theories of organizational routines. One theory predicts that routines should generate patterns of action that are few in number and stable over time, and that atypical patterns of action are driven primarily by exceptional inputs. The competing(More)