Transition and organizational dissonance in Serbia

Graham Hollinshead, Mairi Maclean

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (SciVal)


This study reveals and analyses contradictory narrative voices within a local enterprise in the troubled Balkan region, recently acquired by a multinational enterprise. We employ case study research methods informed by semi-structured interviews with management and worker representatives to expose underlying and conflicting rationalities relating to the upgrading of technological and work systems, as a management-led response to growing market pressures. Recognition of the post-socialist enterprise as a site of political contestation and social fragmentation serves to frustrate broader aspirations of policy-makers towards early transitional closure, and limits the potential applicability of linear western conceptions of organizational change to transitional realities. The Serbian case presents an extreme variant of other, post-socialist contexts, institutionally volatile and politically charged. In an increasingly unbounded, indeterministic world, however, it emerges as potentially archetypal, thus enhancing our understanding of organizations and their management in the new global era.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1551-1574
Number of pages24
JournalHuman Relations
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2007


  • Dissonance
  • Micro-politics
  • Modernization and anti-modernization
  • Narrative
  • Post-socialist transition
  • Serbia


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