Sociology of Organizations

Course Code :1300PSWSOR
Study domain:Sociology
Academic year:2017-2018
Semester:1st semester
Contact hours:45
Credits:6
Study load (hours):168
Contract restrictions: No contract restriction
Language of instruction:English
Exam period:exam in the 1st semester
Lecturer(s)Frederic Vandermoere

3. Course contents *

In contemporary society human behavior is to a large extent embedded within an organizational context. The sociology of organizations examines both the formal and informal structures in organizations, the behavior of organizational members, and the impact this can have on the functioning, viability, and resilience of organizations. In this course we explore a diverse set of sociological perspectives on organizations. Specifically, the course comprises an analysis of different types of organizational problems, different views on and definitions of the concept ‘organization’, and an introduction to some of the forerunners of organizational sociology (cf. e.g. Weber, Michels, etc.). Next to rational system perspectives, we look to developments in natural and open system perspectives on organizations. Throughout the course theoretical and empirical studies on organizations are placed in their historical contexts, e.g. ranging from bureaucracy studies during the 1950s, typology and correlation studies (1960s), studies on inter-organizational and resource dependence (1970s), to contributions from the 1980s onwards (e.g. rational-choice and transaction cost theory). Organizations are further analyzed at different levels, ranging from the micro to the macro-level (e.g. the human relations tradition and the new institutionalism in organizational analysis respectively).