With a background in the humanities and an eclectic bookshelf behind me, my eyes are firmly focused on innovative ways of managing organizations. the aim of my work is to stretch the organizational imagination of practitioners and scholars alike. PARAPHRASING ALBERT O. HIRSCHMAN, I AM interestED in what is possible - NOT WHATis probable.  

When you make manager, we put a big mountain in front of you': An ethnography of managers in a Big 4 Accounting Firm

Previous studies of the socialization of trainee accountants put emphasis on how disciplinary power mechanisms shape their professional identities. Literature on the ongoing growth and commercialization of the Big 4 Accounting Firms suggests that senior employees, and especially partners, have to be understood as entrepreneurially minded agents. These two bodies of knowledge provide the theoretical vantage point for our empirical analysis of the ‘‘missing link’’ between trainee and partner – the manager. Based on an ethnographic study of a Big 4 Firm (pseudonym Sky Accounting), we suggest understanding the career step of the manager as a rite of passage that has two effects: first, managers experience that their previous identity is destabilized; and second, our study shows how a set of new practices (performing, playing games and politicking) shape the identity of managers, enabling them to navigate the complex organizational network of a Big 4 Firm. We conclude our paper with a discussion of power effects of the rite of passage, how it shapes the identity of managers, and the practice of managerial work in a Big 4 Accounting Firm.

When Bureaucracy Meets the Crowd: Studying “Open Government” in the Vienna City Administration

The value of style in architectural practice