Strategic Resource or Ideal Source? Discourse, Organizational Change and CSR


Kemp, Deanna, Julia Keenan, and Jane Gronow. 2010. “Strategic Resource or Ideal Source? Discourse, Organizational Change and CSR.” Journal of Organizational Change Management 23 (5): 578–94. doi:10.1108/09534811011071298.

Authors: Deanna Kemp, Julia Keenan, Jane Gronow


Purpose –

The purpose of this paper is to examine how discourse used as a strategic resource can facilitate change in gender and corporate social responsibility (CSR) policy and practice in a global mining company.

Design/methodology/approach –

An existing model of discourse and organizational change was applied to illuminate the contours of a particular organizational change process. This paper draws on empirical data in the form of talk and text in oral and written form.

Findings –

The research highlights the challenge of finding the right balance between organizational receptivity and resistance, so that discursive boundaries around gender and CSR can be contested and challenged, but where new concepts and subjectivities are not rejected before they have an opportunity to generate shared meaning within the organization. Findings confirm that the involvement of a range of company personnel, particularly from the operational level, is important for generating knowledge and shared meaning, which can lead to enactment. This aligns with observations made in this journal that the management of meaning as opposed to management of change provides a useful analytical and practical focus.

Originality/value –

The paper analyses one of the first attempts by a global mining company to articulate a change agenda for gender and community relations within a CSR framework. Unique insights into the internal world of a global mining company and CSR change processes are provided. The paper utilizes a well-articulated model that facilitates a discursive analysis of organizational change to advance knowledge and understanding.

Keywords: organizational change, reasoning, gender, mining industry, corporate social responsibility

Topics: Economies, Extractive Industries, Gender, Gendered Discourses, Multi-National Corporations

Year: 2010

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