Three Essays on Governance Designs in Digital Age

Abstract : The main objective of this dissertation is to explain why coordinative efficiency, creative efficiency, together with static efficiency are all critical goals of governance design in digital age, and to explore innovative governance arrangements, beyond the one-dimensional line defined by “market” and “hierarchy”, that can facilitate the processes of integrative coordination, and collective creation in organizations.The dissertation is composed of three essays. Essay 1 is a theory paper that provides the overall theoretical arguments about why transaction cost economics (Williamson 1979, 1991, 1996, 2002) is no longer a satisfactory theoretical framework for governance design in the digital age, and offers a normative model which suggest possibilities of much more nuanced, complicated and pluralistic governance choices than suggested by transaction cost economics. It is argued that potential governance choices are not solely situated on a one-dimensional line between hierarchy and market, as transaction cost economics asserts. The rich connotations of socially constructed agency (Giddens, 1985; Greenwood et al. 2011) provide diverse possibilities of governance arrangements, which spread across a triangular plane in a three-dimensional space defined by static efficiency, coordinative efficiency and creative efficiency (see Figure 1). This paper provides both graphic and mathematical presentations of this three-dimensional model for governance design, which can be applied to different levels of organizing.Essay 2 and 3 are two empirical papers that endeavor to extend Essay 1 by finding out the exact relationship between certain innovative governance arrangements with organizations’ performance in coordinative and creative efficiencies. Essay 2 focuses on the realization of integrative coordination in organizations. It found out that layered distributed organizational structure (Simon, 1962), broad-brushed ex ante plan (Edmondson, Bohmer and Pisano, 2001), and semi-structures (Brown and Eisenhardt, 1997) are beneficial in facilitating an ongoing coordination process when interdependencies are complex and uncertain. Essay 3 focuses on organizations’ performance in collective creativity (Shalley et al., 2004; George, 2007), especially on what governance arrangements can best allow collective creativity to emerge without overly sacrificing organizational stability and efficiency. It is discovered that “ordered disruption”, including ordered spatial disruption, ordered temporal disruption and ordered affective disruption, have positive effects on the emergence of collective creativity. Both Essay 2 and Essay 3 use collaborative organizations on smart city projects as the empirical setting. The findings of these two empirical papers are grounded on multiple case studies on those collaborative organizations.
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Guo Bai. Three Essays on Governance Designs in Digital Age. Business administration. Université Paris-Saclay, 2016. English. ⟨NNT : 2016SACLH011⟩. ⟨tel-01502550⟩

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