OS Summer Workshop 2010


The Fifth Organization Studies Workshop
Social Movements, Civil Societies and Corporations

May 2628, 2010

Margaux, France


Papers to be presented at the OS Summer Workshop 2010



Frank de Bakker, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Social Sciences,

Frank den Hond, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Social Sciences,

Brayden King, Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management, Evanston (IL)

Klaus Weber, Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management, Evanston (IL),


Keynote Speakers:

Helmut Anheier, Professor of Sociology and Academic Director of the Center for Social Investment, Heidelberg University, Germany, Professor of Social Welfare and Public Policy, and Director of the Center for Civil Society, Globalization and Policy Research, UCLA, USA

Sarah A. Soule, Professor of Organizational Behavior, Stanford Graduate School of Business, USA

Mayer N. Zald, Professor Emeritus of Sociology, Social Work and Business Administration, University of Michigan, USA?

About Organization Studies Workshops

The Organization Studies Workshop is an annual activity, originally launched in June 2005, to facilitate high-quality scholarship in organization studies. Its primary aim is to advance cutting-edge research on important topics in the field by bringing together a small and competitively selected group of scholars, who will have the opportunity to interact in depth and share insights in a stimulating and scenic environment. From 2010 on, the OS Workshop will be sponsored by Sage in order to help attracting talented scholars from diverse regions of the world, following on editorial purposes of Organization Studies (Courpasson, Arellano-Gault, Brown and Lounsbury 2008).


Following on the tremendous success of the first four Organization Studies Workshops, we are happy to announce that the Fifth Workshop will take place at the Relais de Margaux Golf & Spa Resort, Margaux, France (http://www.relais-margaux.fr) between the 26th and the 28th of May, 2010 . Margaux lies in the Haut Médoc wine making region on the left bank of the Garonne estuary, North West of the city of Bordeaux (30kms away) and 40 kms away from the Bordeaux airport. The Gironde, covering a total surface area of 10,000 km², is the biggest department in France and its estuary, formed by the convergence of the Garonne and the Dordogne, is so large that we even talk of the "European Mississipi". It has the highest dune in Europe, at Le PYLA (112 m), a string of lakes, the forest of Les Landes and Gascony (the biggest forest in Europe) and 1,000,000 hectares of vineyards with legendary names and exquisite vintages. The Workshop venue, originally the château of one of the premier wine-producing families of France, Relais de Margaux, blends a prestigious past with all the facilities of a top class hotel, standing in a 55-hectare estate.


About the topic


Corporations and other private sector organizations are embedded in wider societal and political arrangements and participate in local, national, and transnational polities. They are subjects and objects of civil society, and venues in which conflicts over domination are played out and settled. Contentious politics are a particularly intriguing and understudied aspect of how private sector organizations interact with civil society. In addition to a focus on the state and the formal political environment in more traditional political economy approaches, researchers have recently begun to examine the intersection of social movements and organizations (e.g., Davis et al., 2005). The study of movements promises to address the intermingling of economic and political aspects in organizations, including questions of social and cultural change through the mobilization of informal and non-elite actors at the periphery and the use of extra-institutional tactics and strategies in the process (McAdam, Tarrow & Tilly, 2001). Corporate practices are frequent targets of contemporary movements, including movements against globalization or genetically modified foods and those that promote human rights or international labor standards (e.g., della Porta, Kriesi & Rucht, 1999). Movements are a critical fulcrum that links the informal realm of civil society with formal organizations in the private sector, both in Western and in developing polities.


While an impressive literature examines the relationship of movements to the state, movement activities targeted at non-state organizations have been examined less thoroughly (Walker, Martin & McCarthy, 2008). Even less attention has been given to the reverse dynamic: of private sector organizations targeting or seeking to influence social movements. We believe that much theoretical and empirical work lies ahead to put this budding area of research on more solid ground. This involves a need to better situate the interplay of movements and corporations in perspectives that pay more attention to larger historical and societal structures, a more careful theorization of how movement activity impinges on central organizational processes, and a spatial and temporal expansion of empirical focus beyond nation-centric studies of movements in contemporary Western societies.

The goals of this Special Issue are to (a) stimulate innovative studies of movement dynamics in a variety of corporate, geographic and economic settings, (b) develop the conceptual foundations, frameworks and methods for analyzing the intersection between movements, corporations and societies, and (c) to advance our understanding of mobilization and civil society processes in the political economy from diverse regional and disciplinary perspectives.


We invite theoretical and empirical papers and are agnostic about epistemological and ontological perspectives. We especially welcome papers that are situated in diverse geographies and disciplinary traditions. We conceive of social movements as loosely organized coalitions that contest social, economic and cultural practices or structures through sustained mobilization. We treat the category of the corporation broadly to include private sector organizations of all types.


The following is a list of indicative, but not exhaustive, topic areas, all of which could be addressed in different geographical spheres:


  • Stakeholders and governance: Movements in mobilizing stakeholders and the social control of corporations; explorations of the mechanisms of mobilized stakeholder influence.
  • Civic engagement: Collective mobilization around notions of citizenship, rights and duties in corporations; movement activists and dynamics inside organizations.
  • Identities, networks and audiences: Interplay of movements with organizational identities, images, and reputations; how movement work with each other and their relationships with other organizational audiences, including analysts, shareholders, and the media.
  • Participation, resistance, subversion and cooptation: Corporations as participants, targets and opponents in movements, practices of corporate engagement and conflict with movements.
  • Regime change: Origins of critique and transformation of industry and economic regimes; movement processes in the creation of institutional alternatives and organizational heterogeneity.
  • Technology and entrepreneurship: Movements in the construction and regulation of economic and technological development; the legitimation of new organizational forms and construction of entrepreneurial identities.
  • The local and the global: Local, national and transnational mobilization in the face of local, national and transnational organizations; postcolonial, development and indigenous perspectives; the politics of economic globalization.
  • History, society and institutions: Movements and changes in the relationship between civil society and corporations.



The Fifth Organization Studies Workshop will take place in May 2010, in Margaux, France. Interested participants must submit to an abstract of no more than 1,000 words for their proposed contribution by December 10, 2009 indicating on the subject: Fifth Organization Studies Workshop. The proposal must be submitted as an email attachment (formatted as .doc or .rtf) and should contain authors names, institutional affiliations, email and postal addresses. Authors will be notified of acceptance or otherwise by January 10, 2010. Full papers must be submitted by April 30, 2010. Further details on the venue of workshop will be published through the EGOS website.


Following the workshop, a Special Issue will be announced in Organization Studies. To be considered for publication, papers must be electronically received by November 30, 2010. The latest guidelines for submission and information on the review procedures can be found on the Organization Studies internet pages. It should be made clear that participation in the workshop is not a prerequisite to submit a paper for the Special Issue.



Courpasson David, Arellano-Gault David, Brown Andrew and Lounsbury Michael, 2008. Organization Studies on the Look-out? Being Read, Being Listened to, Organization Studies, Nov 2008; vol. 29: pp. 1383-1390

Davis, Gerald F, Dough McAdam, W Richard Scott, and Mayer N Zald. 2005. Social Movements and Organization Theory. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Della Porta, Donatella, Hanspeter Kriesi, and Dieter Rucht. 1999. Social Movements in A Globalizing World. New York: St Martins.

McAdam, Doug, Sidney Tarrow, and Charles Tilly. 2001. Dynamics of Contention. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Walker, Edward T, Andrew W Martin, and John D. McCarthy. 2008. Confronting the State, the Corporation, and the Academy: The Influence of Institutional Targets on Social Movement Repertoires. American Journal of Sociology. 114(1): 35-76.