NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ857083
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0969-6474
How to Organize for Local Resource Generation
Backstrom, Tomas
Learning Organization, v16 n3 p223-236 2009
Purpose: The generation of resources is a central issue for the sustainability of companies. The purpose of this paper is to deal with two research questions: "Is decentralized generation of resources a possible way to reach sustainability in modern work life?" and "What prerequisites must be formed by organizations and managers to reach decentralized generation of resources?" Design/methodology/approach: The theoretical basis for this discussion is the complex adaptive systems theory. Three requirements for sustainable decentralized resource production are deduced: worker's autonomy, worker's integration in the organization, and demands on increased fitness. The empirical basis for answering these questions is the study of four different pharmacy-districts, each with a different organizational solution. Three sources of data are used: interviews with the four pharmacy-district managers; a questionnaire to all employees, and the balance scorecard of the company. Findings: Two of the districts may have reached an unbalance on the system level between autonomy and integration. The other two districts have similar scores of medium for both autonomy and feeling of integration. One of the balanced districts has also a manager focusing bottom-up change processes. This district has both the strongest resource generation and a leading position in increasing efficiency and customer satisfaction and, thus, sustainability. Originality/value: A simple model is formulated based on complex systems theory and tested in real life: decentralized resource generation is one way of obtaining sustainability; co-existence of both autonomy and integration of employees, combined with a leadership of transformative character, all encourage this. The paper may inspire researchers, managers, consultants and workers to use this new perspective on organizations and sustainability.
Emerald. 875 Massachusetts Avenue 7th Floor, Cambridge, MA 02139. Tel: 888-622-0075; Fax: 617-354-6875; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A