Soglie, scene, spazi e artefatti come strumenti di conoscenza dell’organizzazione

Author/s Barbara Mellini, Sabina Giorgi, Alessandra Talamo
Publishing Year 2014 Issue 2014/1
Language Italian Pages 29 P. 97-125 File size 175 KB
DOI 10.3280/SO2014-001005
DOI is like a bar code for intellectual property: to have more infomation click here

Below, you can see the article first page

If you want to buy this article in PDF format, you can do it, following the instructions to buy download credits

Article preview

FrancoAngeli is member of Publishers International Linking Association, Inc (PILA), a not-for-profit association which run the CrossRef service enabling links to and from online scholarly content.

This paper aims at providing a framework to understand the «trajectory of access» (Bruni, 2006) to a Complex Operative Unit (COU) of an Italian hospital. Goffman’s dramaturgic metaphor (1959) is used to show how participants reveal organizational functioning and suggest interpretive paths to the researcher. Each "act" of accessing the field is played on a different stage: from institutional access, to the attempts of embedding the newcomer into local dynamics, to her acceptation within ward's private spaces. Along this process towards the centre of professional community’s activities and meanings, the researcher is observed, "interpreted" and differently positioned in the field. In fact, self-presentation acts performed by both the researcher and the organization offer suggestions on the issues to deepen and the actions to look at. Therefore, access becomes a "key" to gain understanding of organization's practices and meanings. Physical spaces and artifacts used by the professional community, including «boundary making artifacts» (Zucchermaglio et. al., 2013) are taken into consideration as relevant expressions of organizational internal functioning. As a material component of the scenes, these objects are de-constructed and re-constructed in their meanings by both researcher and participants, within the space of their face-to-face interaction. According to this perspective, some episodes from the initial encounters between researcher and participants will be discussed and analyzed. Therefore the specific phase of the access to the field becomes an «important moment of observation per se» (Bruni, 2006: 138) where participants - through self-presentation acts - suggest the ethnographer what is important to note.

Keywords: Hospital Complex Operative Unit, Gaining Access, Ethnographic Research, Boundary Making Artifacts, Physical Spaces.

  1. Allen, D.A. (2001), The Changing Shape of Nursing Practice: The Role of Nurses in the Hospital Division of Labour, London, Routledge.
  2. Allen, D.A. (2007), “What Do You Do at Work? Profession Building and Doing Nursing”, International Nursing Review, 54, 1: 41-48, DOI: 10.1111/J.1466-7657.2007.00496.X
  3. Allen, D.A., Pilnick, A. (2005), “Making Connections: Healthcare as a Case Study in the Social Organization of Work”, Sociology of Health & Illness, 27, 6: 683-700, DOI: 10.1111/J.1467-9566.2005.00469.X
  4. Allen, D.A., Lyne, P.A. (1997), “Nurses’ Flexible Working Practices: Some Ethnographic Insights into Clinical Effectiveness”, Clinical Effectiveness in Nursing, 1: 131-140, DOI: 10.1111/J.1467-9302.2008.00614.X.Annandale,E.(1996),“WorkingontheFront-Line:RiskCultureandNursingintheNewNHS”,SociologyReview,44,3:416-51,doi:10.1111/J.1467-954X.1996.TB00431.X
  5. Bruni, A. (2003), Lo studio etnografico delle organizzazioni, Roma, Carocci.
  6. Bruni, A. (2006), “Access as Trajectory: Entering the Field in Organization Ethnography”, M@n@gement, 3, 9: 137-152, DOI: 10.3917/mana.093.0137
  7. Buchanan, D., Boddy, D., McCalman, J. (1988), “Getting in, Getting on, Getting out, and Getting back”, in Bryman, A. (ed.), Doing Research in Organizations, London, Routledge, pp. 53-67.
  8. Currie, G., Finn, R., Martin, G. (2010), “Role Transition and the Interaction of Relational and Social Identity: New Nursing Roles in the English NHS”, Organization Studies, 31: 941-961, DOI: 10.1177/0170840610373199
  9. de Certeau, M. (1980), L'Invention du quotidien. I. Arts de faire, Parigi, UGE (trad. it. L'invenzione del quotidiano, Roma, Edizioni Lavoro, 2001).
  10. Dingwall, R., Allen, D.A. (2001), “The Implications of Healthcare Reforms for the Profession of Nursing”, Nursing Inquiry, 8, 2: 64-74, DOI: 10.1046/J.1440-1800.2001.00100.X
  11. Duranti, A. (1997), Linguistic Anthropology, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press (trad. it. Antropologia del linguaggio, Roma, Meltemi, 2000).
  12. Feldman, C. (2002), “The Construction of Mind and Self in an Interpretative Community”, in J. Brokmeier, M. Wang, D.R. Olson (eds.), Literacy, Narrative and Culture, London, Curzon, pp. 52-66.
  13. Feldman, M.S. (2003), Gaining Access. A Pratical and Theoretical Guide for Qualitative Research, Walnut Creek, Lanham, New York, Oxford, Altamira Press.
  14. Gagliardi, P. (1990), “Artifact as Pathways and Remains of Organizational Life”, in P. Gagliardi, (ed.) Symbols and Artifacts: Views of the Corporate Landscape. Aldine de Gruyter, pp. 3-38.
  15. Garfinkel, H. (1967), Studies in Ethnomethodology, Englewood Cliffs, Prentice-Hall.
  16. Goffman, E. (1959), The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life, New York, Doubleday (trad. it. La vita quotidiana come rappresentazione, Bologna, Il Mulino, 1983).
  17. Goffman, E. (1961), Asylums. Essay on the Social Situation of Mental Patients and Other Inmates, New York, Doubleday (trad. it. Asylums. Le istituzioni totali: i meccanismi dell’esclusione e della violenza, Torino, Einaudi, 2003).
  18. Gummesson, E. (2000), Qualitative Methods in Management Research, London, Sage.
  19. Hutchins, E. (1995), Cognition in the Wild, Cambridge, MIT Press. Hutchins, E., Klausen T. (1996), “Distributed Cognition in an Airline Cockpit”, in Y.
  20. Engstrom, D. Middleton, (eds.), Cognition and Communication at Work, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, pp. 15-34,
  21. Johl, S.K., Renganathan, S. (2010), “Strategies for Gaining Access in Doing Fieldwork: Reflection of Two Research”, The Electronic Journal of Business Research Methods, 8, 1: 42-50, DOI: 10.1177/0952872002012002114
  22. Kawulich, B. (2011), “Gatekeeping: An Ongoing Adventure in Research”, Field Methods, 23, 1: 57-76.
  23. Labaree, R.V. (2002), “The Risk of ‘Going Observationalist’: Negotiating the Hidden Dilemmas of Being an Insider Participant Observer”, Qualitative Research, 2, 1: 97-122, DOI: 10.1177/1468794102002001641
  24. Laurila, J. (1997), “Promoting Research Access and Informant Rapport in Corporative Settings: Notes from Research on a Crisis Company”, Scandinavian Journal of Management, 13, 4: 407-418, DOI: 10.1016/S0956-5221(97)00026-2
  25. Lévi-Strauss, C. (1962), La pensée sauvage, Paris, Pion (trad. it. Il pensiero selvaggio, Milano, Il Saggiatore, 1979).
  26. Murray, S.B. (2003), “A Spy, a Shill, a Go-Between, or a Sociologist: Unveiling the ‘Observer’ in Participant Observer”, Qualitative Research, 3, 3: 377-395, DOI: 10.1177/1468794103033006
  27. Okumus, F., Altinay, L., Roper, A. (2007), “Gaining Access For Research. Reflection from Experience”, Annals of Tourism Research, 34, 1: 7-26, DOI: 10.1016/J.ANNALS.2006.07.00
  28. Ortiz, S.M. (2004), “Leaving the Private World of Wives or Professional Athletes: A Male Sociologist’s Reflections”, Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, 33, 4: 446-87, DOI: 10.1177/0891241604265980
  29. Padiglione, V., Fatigante, M., Giorgi, S. (2007), “Sulla soglia: istanze riflessive. Costruire la relazione in una etnografia sulle famiglie”, in Rivista di Psicolinguistica Applicata, VII, 3: 53-79.
  30. Piasere, L. (2002), L'etnografo imperfetto. Esperienza e cognizione in antropologia, Roma-Bari, Laterza, DOI: 10.1400/12434
  31. Reeves, C.L. (2010), “A Difficult Negotiation: Fieldwork Relations with Gatekeepers”, Qualitative Research, 10, 3: 315-331, DOI: 10.1177/1468794109360150
  32. Sacks, H. (1992), Lectures on Conversation (Vol. I and II), Oxford, Blackwell.
  33. Shenton, A.K., Hayter, S. (2004), “Strategies for gaining access to organization and informants in qualitative studies”, Education for Information, 22: 223-231.
  34. Van Maanen, J. (1981), “The Informant Game Selected Aspects of Ethnographic Research in Police Organizations”, Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, 9, 4: 469-494. Van Maanen, J., Kolb, D. (1982), The professional apprentice: observations on fieldwork roles in two organizational settings, working papers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  35. Wanat, C.L. (2008), “Getting Past the Gatekeepers: Differences Between Access and Cooperation in Public School Research”, Field Methods, 20, 2: 191-208, DOI: 10.1177/1525822X07313811
  36. Wenger, E. (1988), Communities of Practice. Learning, meaning and Identity, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press (trad. it. Comunità di pratica. Apprendimento, significato e identità, Milano, Raffaello Cortina Editore, 2006).
  37. Zucchermaglio, C., Alby, F., Fatigante, M., Saglietti, M. (2013) Fare ricerca situata in psicologia sociale, Bologna, Il Mulino.

Barbara Mellini, Sabina Giorgi, Alessandra Talamo, Soglie, scene, spazi e artefatti come strumenti di conoscenza dell’organizzazione in "STUDI ORGANIZZATIVI " 1/2014, pp 97-125, DOI: 10.3280/SO2014-001005