Coping with Change: The contribution of postdichotomous ontologies

Nic Beech, G Cairns

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    37 Citations (Scopus)


    This article seeks to conceptualize interactions surrounding organizational change. Four ideal types of reality(ies) are presented here using the metaphor of language. Actors' representations of experience are presented in order to illustrate these concepts. We argue that types I and 2, which are epitomized by dichotomous thought, are unlikely to provide adequate managerial insight in coping with complex change, whereas types 3 and 4, which are typified by 'postdichotomous' thought, hold greater possibilities as frameworks for coping with such social situations. The concept of 'coping', as opposed to 'managing', as a way of 'acting thinkingly' in and around organizational change is explored.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1303-1324
    Number of pages22
    JournalHuman Relations
    Issue number10
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2001


    • change
    • coping
    • postclichotomous
    • reality

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