Paper on New Organizational Forms published in Journal of Organization Design

Changes in formal structure towards self‑managing organization and their effects on the intra‑organizational communication network

The Journal of Organization Design is the intellectual home of organization design thinking. Drawing on a wide variety of disciplines, organization design analyzes how organizations of any kind work, and how they can work better, focusing on the choices about structures, systems, and processes as well as emergent phenomena such as culture and networks that drive various organizational outcomes.

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In this understanding Marcel Maurer, Norbert Bach and Simon Oertel show in their paper

"Changes in formal structure toward self-managing organization and their effects on the intra-organizational communication network"

which effects changes in the formal organizational structure towards a new organizational form aiming at self-management have on the communication network of a company.

The quantitative network analysis is based on log files of the company's mail traffic collected over three time periods. For interpretation, contextual information from numerous documents and 95 interviews with top management, middle management and employees of the company were used.

The communication network changes during the observation period of three years from a network focused on central actors to a network that is less dense overall and less dominated by individual actors. The relief for management and independent execution of tasks by employees that is hoped for with the introduction of new forms of organization is also evident in the communications network, albeit only over the course of three years. The main factor influencing centrality in the network, even in new forms of organization, is the hierarchical position of an employee. Promotions are accompanied by an increase in centrality, while demotions due to persistence effects have little impact on the position in the network.

Due to the DEAL contract with Springer, this article is available in open access.


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