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2022 | z. 163 | 133--167
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Institutional Conditions for Effective Communication in Legitimate Organizations

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Purpose: The aim of this paper is to (1) discuss current topics related to organizational communication with reference to legitimacy problems described within the institutional theory framework and to (2) show how the proposed solutions may be important with regard to research on communication processes in organizations and for theorists dealing with foundational assumptions for organization studies. As for reaching the core point of processes under investigation in the paper researchers make use of metaphors leading to rising concerns over the appropriate lens used to understand reality, the discussion in the paper is conducted in the light of more abstract considerations over the paradox of agency and assumptions related to epistemological and ontological stances of institutionalists or critical researchers. Design/methodology/approach: The theoretical scope of the paper covers selected streams of research of institutional theory focused on communication processes, however, some further attention is paid to e.g. possibilities for the critical institutional analysis to emerging. In order to achieve the goals of the paper theoretical analysis is conducted based on selected papers important regarding how institutional theory can develop in the field of communication research. Findings: Considering the phenomena of legitimacy building based on appropriate communication with external and internal evaluators as a challenging task whose effect may depend on actors' agency opens interesting perspectives from which those relations may be analyzed. Nevertheless, it is also emphasized that each time when attempting to answer posed questions by referring to theories that may turn out not to be the best choice for this task, the researches need to maintain aware that those trials can potentially introduce primarily further ambiguity in arguments instead of clarifications. Thus, conclusions allow for recognition of main ontological and epistemological assumptions lying behind propositions that should be considered when building new ones related to communication. Hence, it becomes possible to outline hints as to when it may be especially possible for successful communication to occur. Originality/value: The paper addresses the problems related mainly to the communicative stream of research within the institutional theory framework by focusing on the conditions of the appropriateness of using metaphors as a source of inspiration for the advancement of theoretical reasoning. Because of the growing level of sophistication of how processes of communication are described, it is worth doing to indicate not only assumptions behind new propositions but also to delineate boundaries within which those propositions are to be built. (original abstract)
Opis fizyczny
  • University of Economics in Katowice, Poland
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