Instances of wrongdoing in and by organizations have featured heavily in news headlines in recent years. Why do organizational participants-employees, managers, senior officials-engage in illegal, unethical, and socially irresponsible behavior? The dominant view of wrongdoing as an abnormal phenomenon assumes that the perpetrator is a rational, proactive actor, working in isolation. However, Palmer develops an alternative approach in this book, examining wrongdoing as a normal occurrence, produced by boundedly rational actors whose behaviour is shaped by the immediate social context over a period of time. The book provides a comprehensive critical review of the theory and research on organizational wrongdoing. By using rich case study material, it illuminates different perspectives, potential explanations, and policy suggestions for the reduction of organizational wrongdoing.
Donald Palmer is Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Graduate School of Management, University of California, Davis. He has served as Assistant Professor in the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University and as chair of the Department of Sociology at Reed College. Professor Palmer has conducted quantitative empirical studies on corporate strategy, structure, and inter-organizational relations and qualitative studies of organizational wrongdoing, which have been published in the American Sociological Review, American Journal of Sociology, Annual Review of Sociology, Social Forces, Research in the Sociology of Organizations Administrative Science Quarterly, Research in Organizational Behavior, Strategic Organization, and Journal of Management Inquiry. He was an Associate Editor of Administrative Science Quarterly from 2000 to 2002 and Editor of the journal from 2003 to 2008.
Preface ; Introduction ; 1. The Normal Organizational Wrongdoing Perspective ; 2. Definitions, Theory Development, and Method ; 3. A Rational Choice ; 4. The Cultural Embeddedness Account ; 5. Behavioral Decision Theory ; 6. The Administrative System Account ; 7. Situational Social Influence ; 8. The Power Structure Account ; 9. Accidental Wrongdoing ; 10. The Social Control of Organizational Wrongdoing ; Conclusion