Workshop Series: Mats Alvesson
The seminar outlines a research methodology developed around two basic elements: the active discovery and/or creation of mysteries and the subsequent solving of the mysteries. A key element is the reflexive opening up of established theory and vocabulary through a systematic search for deviations from what would be expected, given established wisdom, in empirical contexts. “Data” are seen as an inspiration for critical dialogues between theoretical frameworks and empirical work. The seminar suggests that we carefully consider the construction - and not codification - of "data" and try to make empirical material surprising and challenging in order to facilitate the development of new ideas. The seminar provides some illustrations of this methodology. The seminar is based on the recently published book 'Qualitative Research and Theory Development. Mystery as Method' (Sage 2011, with D Karreman)
Mats Alvesson is Professor of Business Administration at the University of Lund, Sweden and at University of Queensland Business School, Australia. Research interests include critical theory, gender, power, management of professional service (knowledge intensive) organizations, leadership, identity, organizational image, organizational culture and symbolism, qualitative methods and philosophy of science. Recent books include Interpreting Interviews (Sage 2011), Metaphor we lead by. Understanding leadership in the real world (Routledge 2011, ed with Andre Spicer), Oxford Handbook of Critical Management Studies (Oxford University Press, edited with Todd Bridgman and Hugh Willmott), Understanding gender and organizations (Sage, 2009, 2nd ed with Yvonne Billing) and Reflexive methodology (Sage, 2009, 2nd ed, with Kaj Skoldberg).