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The University of Southampton

RESM6027 Political and Institutional Perspectives on Change Management

Module Overview

This module focuses on the potentially huge and unpredictable effects which contextual issues and events may have on individual organisations. The articulation of the various sets of theories which contribute to an understanding of how and why macro-scale events and dynamics impact organisational change practice. This module presents multiple opportunities to deal with complex cause and effect relationships systematically and creatively, make appropriate judgements in the absence of complete data, and communicate conclusions clearly to a range of audiences.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Discern and provide explanations for patterns of activity and behaviour outside a given organisation which will have a likely and sequential effect on the change processes within the given organisation.
  • Present analysis which will stand rigorous academic inquiry, and provide plausibility, logic and consequence. Theories will be referenced, and the candidate will be able to integrate and connect aspects of the analysis to their own experience.


Exploration of larger scale patterns of social behaviour and institutional structure and how they affect more localised change initiatives. Business cycle theory and implications for change at organisational levels; technological innovation and Schumpeterian capitalism; neo-classical economic approaches and efficiency; regulation of neo-classical systems; peak associative behaviour – the institutional landscape and institutional theory; transactions cost analysis; social institutional theory.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

The module content will be delivered through a three day intensive block workshop. There will be a mix of focussed lecturer input and small group application of theories, models and concepts. The workshop is divided into sections where personal experience is shared; cases are investigated in groups; tutor input is provided; audio visual techniques used. Students reflect on and build new theory into evolving world view.

Completion of assessment task50
Preparation for scheduled sessions50
Wider reading or practice60
Follow-up work16
Total study time200

Resources & Reading list

Wilson, D. Managing Strategic Change. 

Richards D. & Smith M. Governance & Public Policy in the United Kingdom. 

Stacey R. D.. Strategic Management and Organisational Dynamics: The Challenge of Complexity. 

Ebner A. Beck N. (eds.). The Institutions of the Market: Organizations, Social Systems & Governance. 

Coghlan, D., & Brannick, T.,. Doing Action Research in Your Own Organisation. 

Journals. Administrative Science Quarterly British Journal of Management American Journal of Political Science Journal of Change Management Journal of Management Studies Journal of Organizational Change Management

Peters, B.G.. Institutional Theory in Political Science: The 'new Institutionalism'. 



MethodPercentage contribution
Essay  (4000 words) 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Essay  (4000 words) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

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