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Reification and representation in the implementation of quality improvement programmes

Baxter, L.F. and Hirschhauser, C. (2004) Reification and representation in the implementation of quality improvement programmes. International Journal of Operations & Production Management, 24 (2). pp. 207-224. ISSN 0144-3577

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The object of this paper is to explore superficiality in implementing improvement programmes. The reported lack of success of some quality improvement programmes in realising stated objectives is recognised, but what constitutes the superficial attempts at implementation may well be highly complex symbolic forms of representation and reification which have a multiplicity of meanings for the individuals involved. The project managers try to implement and the tools and activities used to do so are superficial and trivial, and very difficult for observers to associate with improving operations. However, for the managers themselves the superficial has a high degree of significance for their own progression in the organisation and, curiously enough, the means of convincing some outsiders of the organisation's competence. The dominant community of practice was not that of performance improvement, but creating the impression of doing so.

Item Type: Article
Institution: The University of York
Academic Units: The University of York > The York Management School
Depositing User: York RAE Import
Date Deposited: 14 May 2009 14:57
Last Modified: 14 May 2009 14:58
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/01443570410514894
Status: Published
Publisher: Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Identification Number: 10.1108/01443570410514894
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/6413

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