Research Handbook of Responsible Management
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Research Handbook of Responsible Management

Edited by Oliver Laasch, Roy Suddaby, R. E. Freeman and Dima Jamali

Outlining origins of the field and latest research trends, this Research Handbook offers a unique and cutting-edge take on the numerous avenues to responsible management in the 21st century. Renowned contributors present iconic viewpoints that have formed the foundation of responsible management research, introducing cutting-edge conceptual lenses for the study of the responsible management process.
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Chapter 6: Responsible management as re-enchantment and retrovation

Roy Suddaby and Oliver Laasch


We recognize the over-rationalized nature of contemporary management theory and practice as one of the main roots of irresponsible management. Responsible managers, therefore, first and foremost have to internalize that managerial myths of rationality are not above and beyond human agency. This insight may empower responsible managers to engage in the institutional work of re-enchanting the economic world. Crucial tasks of such institutional work include both the creation of a responsible management profession and a change of the corporation’s institutional character. Both institutionalization projects hinge on realizing managers’ and corporations’ entangled positive roles in the service of society. We discuss craft modes of production as an alternative to the rationalized bigger-is-better management paradigm. We stress the need for similar responsible management innovations that break with current paradigms of an over-rationalized economic world. Craft modes of management exemplify the potential of ‘retrovation’, novelty through the revival of managerial practices from a less-rationalized economic past.

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