No. 1, 2012

Involvement Without Participation? : (Mis-)Managing the Psychosocial Working Environment in a Knowledge-Intensive Organisation
This article presents a case study of a knowledge-intensive company that launched a 2-year project to improve their psychosocial working environment. All parties agreed on the project, and the methods used aimed to promote the involvement of the employees. Surprisingly, the psychosocial working environment did not improve; on the contrary, it deteriorated. The article highlights cultural and structural obstacles to the process, including an inadequate understanding of organisational learning and a narrow focus on market and competition. The endeavours did not consistently increase delegation and participation. In order to develop a more sustainable and viable psychosocial working environment, a broader and more democratic notion of organisational learning and managing is proposed.

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Peter Olsén