Title: Action research as a knowledge generating change methodology

Authors: Anita Martincic, Ken Dovey

Addresses: University of Technology, Sydney, P.O. Box 123, Broadway, NSW, 2007, Australia. ' University of Technology, Sydney, P.O. Box 123, Broadway, NSW, 2007, Australia

Abstract: The paper outlines an action research project conducted within an Australian public sector organisation with the purpose of changing a key internal business process. Despite the significant challenges incurred by using a change methodology considered to be |radical| within this conventional, hierarchically structured, organisation, the business process was transformed successfully and productivity has increased significantly within the organisation. Furthermore, the action research approach generated pertinent new knowledge; greatly enriched various forms of intangible capital within the organisation; and created a precedent with respect to greater collaboration and democracy within the organisation. In encouraging this approach to managing change within hierarchically structured organisations, the paper advocates caution in its introduction and warns of the challenges that it poses for power management in such organisations.

Keywords: leadership; hierarchical organisations; action research; change management; organisational learning; intangible capital resources; intangible resources; Australia; public sector; collaboration; knowledge creation; power management.

DOI: 10.1504/IJLIC.2011.037362

International Journal of Learning and Intellectual Capital, 2011 Vol.8 No.1, pp.108 - 122

Published online: 27 Nov 2014 *

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