Artefact Analysis in Organisational Research

Froschauer, Ulrike and Lueger, Manfred (2016) Artefact Analysis in Organisational Research. Master Thesis Supply Chain Management, 2016/02. WU Vienna University of Economics and Business, Vienna.


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Man-made objects are an expression of both the social organisation in which they were produced and the communicative context in which they appear and are used. In this respect, they represent easily accessible material, which is highly suitable for and useful in reconstructing the social structures in organisations and opening up latent structures of meaning for analysis. Nevertheless the analysis of physical materials has tended to live a shadow existence. This paper presents a hermeneutic method of analysing artefacts in organisations. The basic concept centres on the reconstructing of the processes of meaning and organising in social systems. After providing a brief introduction to the methodological principles, the paper goes on to discuss this method in greater detail. Concrete examples of the study of specific materials in an organisational analysis context are used to ground the interpretation of artefacts in the overall organisational analysis context. The paper closes with a discussion of the possibilities and limitations of this kind of analysis.

Item Type: Paper
Keywords: artefact analysis / hermeneutics / visual sociology / organisational studies / qualitative methods
Depositing User: ePub Administrator
Date Deposited: 26 Jul 2016 11:15
Last Modified: 20 Nov 2019 10:01
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