The silent politics of temporal work: A case study of a management consultancy project to redesign public health care

Journal article


McGivern, Gerry, Dopson, Sue, Ferlie, Ewan, Fischer, Michael Daniel, Fitzgerald, Louise, Ledger, Jean and Bennett, Chris. (2017). The silent politics of temporal work: A case study of a management consultancy project to redesign public health care. Organization Studies. https://doi.org/10.1177/0170840617708004
AuthorsMcGivern, Gerry, Dopson, Sue, Ferlie, Ewan, Fischer, Michael Daniel, Fitzgerald, Louise, Ledger, Jean and Bennett, Chris
Abstract

In this article, we discuss temporal work and temporal politics situated between groups with different temporal orientations, arguing that attention needs to be paid to covert and unarticulated silent politics during temporal work. Drawing on a case study of a management consultancy project to redesign public health care, we explain how unarticulated temporal interests and orientations shape the construction of problems, which, in turn, legitimate tasks and time frames. We also show how task and time frames are temporarily fixed and imposed through boundary objects, and the way these may then be reinterpreted and co-opted to deflect pressure to change. Thus, we argue, unarticulated, covert and political temporal inter-dynamics produce expedient provisional temporal settlements, which resolve conflict in the short term, while perpetuating it in the longer run.

Keywordsboundary objects; consulting; health care; project-based and temporary organization; projects; temporal politics; temporal work; time
Year2017
JournalOrganization Studies
PublisherSage
ISSN0170-8406
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1177/0170840617708004
Page range1 - 24
Research GroupCentre for Sustainable HRM and Wellbeing
Publisher's version
File Access Level
Controlled
Place of publicationUnited States of America
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