15,266 research outputs found

    Testing the nomological network for the Personal Engagement Model

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    The study of employee engagement has been a key focus of management for over three decades. The academic literature on engagement has generated multiple definitions but there are two primary models of engagement: the Personal Engagement Model of Kahn (1990), and the Work Engagement Model (WEM) of Schaufeli et al., (2002). While the former is cited by most authors as the seminal work on engagement, research has tended to focus on elements of the model and most theoretical work on engagement has predominantly used the WEM to consider the topic. The purpose of this study was to test all the elements of the nomological network of the PEM to determine whether the complete model of personal engagement is viable. This was done using data from a large, complex public sector workforce. Survey questions were designed to test each element of the PEM and administered to a sample of the workforce (n = 3,103). The scales were tested and refined using confirmatory factor analysis and then the model was tested determine the structure of the nomological network. This was validated and the generalisability of the final model was tested across different work and organisational types. The results showed that the PEM is viable but there were differences from what was originally proposed by Kahn (1990). Specifically, of the three psychological conditions deemed necessary for engagement to occur, meaningfulness, safety, and availability, only meaningfulness was found to contribute to employee engagement. The model demonstrated that employees experience meaningfulness through both the nature of the work that they do and the organisation within which they do their work. Finally, the findings were replicated across employees in different work types and different organisational types. This thesis makes five contributions to the engagement paradigm. It advances engagement theory by testing the PEM and showing that it is an adequate representation of engagement. A model for testing the causal mechanism for engagement has been articulated, demonstrating that meaningfulness in work is a primary mechanism for engagement. The research has shown the key aspects of the workplace in which employees experience meaningfulness, the nature of the work that they do and the organisation within which they do it. It has demonstrated that this is consistent across organisations and the type of work. Finally, it has developed a reliable measure of the different elements of the PEM which will support future research in this area

    Grasping nothing: a study of minimal ontologies and the sense of music

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    If music were to have a proper sense – one in which it is truly given – one might reasonably place this in sound and aurality. I contend, however, that no such sense exists; rather, the sense of music takes place, and it does so with the impossible. To this end, this thesis – which is a work of philosophy and music – advances an ontology of the impossible (i.e., it thinks the being of what, properly speaking, can have no being) and considers its implications for music, articulating how ontological aporias – of the event, of thinking the absolute, and of sovereignty’s dismemberment – imply senses of music that are anterior to sound. John Cage’s Silent Prayer, a nonwork he never composed, compels a rerethinking of silence on the basis of its contradictory status of existence; Florian Hecker et al.’s Speculative Solution offers a basis for thinking absolute music anew to the precise extent that it is a discourse of meaninglessness; and Manfred Werder’s [yearn] pieces exhibit exemplarily that music’s sense depends on the possibility of its counterfeiting. Inso-much as these accounts produce musical senses that take the place of sound, they are also understood to be performances of these pieces. Here, then, thought is music’s organon and its instrument

    Do Catholics have an external locus of evaluation? Inauthentic experiences of Catholic guilt in the pursuit of self-forgiveness

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    This two-part mixed methods study investigated emotional response to transgression and selffor-giveness in Catholic individuals in concert with locus of evaluation orientation following a hypothe-sis that Catholics may be particularly unable to find self-forgiveness in the teachings of their reli-gion. Study 1 was a qualitative semi-structured interview with a sample of 20 practicing Catholic participants. Questions focused on the emotive experiences of selfforgiveness and transgressions and the contribution that Catholic practices (prayer and reconciliation) make to the process. Data were analysed using thematic analysis which supported evidence of Catholic guilt but suggested that there may be some inauthenticity and insincerity with which penitents' approach reconciliato-ry practices. Study 2 used a sample of 239 Christian participants in groups of Catholics and Christian non-Catholics. Participants responded to two psychometric questionnaires: the Heartland Forgiveness Scale, and the Locus of Evaluation Inventory. Followed by two additional questions pertaining to self-forgiveness experiences, and one question requiring participants to prioritise types of forgiveness. The results found no difference between Catholics and non-Catholics in their response to self-forgiveness or locus of evaluation orientation. However, in non-Catholic Christians but not in Catholics, the frequency of religious practice correlated with higher total forgiveness and its subscales (including self-forgiveness), with more internal locus of evaluation, and with lower self-regard, suggesting that church attendance does not relate to the propensity for self-forgiveness in Catholic individuals

    The temporality of rhetoric: the spatialization of time in modern criticism

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    Every conception of criticism conceals a notion of time which informs the manner in which the critic conceives of history, representation and criticism itself. This thesis reveals the philosophies of time inherent in certain key modern critical concepts: allegory, irony and the sublime. Each concept opens a breach in time, a disruption of chronology. In each case this gap or aporia is emphatically closed, elided or denied. Taking the philosophy of time elaborated by Giorgio Agamben as an introductory proposition, my argument turns in Chapter One to the allegorical temporality which Walter Benjamin sees as the time of photography. The second chapter examines the aesthetics of the sublime as melancholic or mournful untimeliness. In Chapter Three, Paul de Man's conception of irony provides an exemplary instance of the denial of this troubling temporal predicament. In opposition to the foreclosure of the disturbing temporalities of criticism, history and representation, the thesis proposes a fundamental rethinking of the philosophy of time as it relates to these categories of reflection. In a reading of an inaugural meditation on the nature of time, and in examining certain key contemporary philosophical and critical texts, I argue for a critical attendance to that which eludes those modes of thought that attempt to map time as a recognizable and essentially spatial field. The Confessions of Augustine provide, in the fourth chapter, a model for thinking through the problems set up earlier: Augustine affords us, precisely, a means of conceiving of the gap or the interim. In the final chapter, this concept is developed with reference to the criticism of Arnold and Eliot, the fiction of Virginia Woolf and the philosophy of cinema derived from Deleuze and Lyotard. In conclusion, the philosophical implications of the thesis are placed in relation to a conception of the untimeliness of death

    'Exarcheia doesn't exist': Authenticity, Resistance and Archival Politics in Athens

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    My thesis investigates the ways people, materialities and urban spaces interact to form affective ecologies and produce historicity. It focuses on the neighbourhood of Exarcheia, Athens’ contested political topography par excellence, known for its production of radical politics of discontent and resistance to state oppression and eoliberal capitalism. Embracing Exarcheia’s controversial status within Greek vernacular, media and state discourses, this thesis aims to unpick the neighbourhoods’ socio-spatial assemblage imbued with affect and formed through the numerous (mis)understandings and (mis)interpretations rooted in its turbulent political history. Drawing on theory on urban spaces, affect, hauntology and archival politics, I argue for Exarcheia as an unwavering archival space composed of affective chronotopes – (in)tangible loci that defy space and temporality. I posit that the interwoven narratives and materialities emerging in my fieldwork are persistently – and perhaps obsessively – reiterating themselves and remaining imprinted on the neighbourhood’s landscape as an incessant reminder of violent histories that the state often seeks to erase and forget. Through this analysis, I contribute to understandings of place as a primary ethnographic ‘object’ and the ways in which place forms complex interactions and relationships with social actors, shapes their subjectivities, retains and bestows their memories and senses of historicity

    Political Islam and grassroots activism in Turkey : a study of the pro-Islamist Virtue Party's grassroots activists and their affects on the electoral outcomes

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    This thesis presents an analysis of the spectacular rise of political Islam in Turkey. It has two aims: first to understand the underlying causes of the rise of the Welfare Party which -later became the Virtue Party- throughout the 1990s, and second to analyse how grassroots activism influenced this process. The thesis reviews the previous literature on the Islamic fundamentalist movements, political parties, political party systems and concentrates on the local party organisations and their effects on the party's electoral performance. It questions the categorisation of Islamic fundamentalism as an appropriate label for this movement. An exploration of such movements is particularly important in light of the event of 11`x' September. After exploring existing theoretical and case studies into political Islam and party activism, I present my qualitative case study. I have used ethnographic methodology and done participatory observations among grassroots activists in Ankara's two sub-districts covering 105 neighbourhoods. I examined the Turkish party system and the reasons for its collapse. It was observed that as a result of party fragmentation, electoral volatility and organisational decline and decline in the party identification among the citizens the Turkish party system has declined. However, the WP/VP profited from this trend enormously and emerged as the main beneficiary of this process. Empirical data is analysed in four chapters, dealing with the different aspects of the Virtue Party's local organisations and grassroots activists. They deal with change and continuity in the party, the patterns of participation, the routes and motives for becoming a party activist, the profile of party activists and the local party organisations. I explore what they do and how they do it. The analysis reveals that the categorisation of Islamic fundamentalism is misplaced and the rise of political Islam in Turkey cannot be explained as religious revivalism or the rise of Islamic fundamentalism. It is a political force that drives its strength from the urban poor which has been harshly affected by the IMF directed neoliberal economy policies. In conclusion, it is shown that the WP/VP's electoral chances were significantly improved by its very efficient and effective party organisations and highly committed grassroots activists

    Management controls, government regulations, customer involvement: Evidence from a Chinese family-owned business

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    This research reports on a case study of a family-owned elevator manufacturing company in China, where management control was sandwiched between the state policies and global customer production requirements. By analysing the role of government and customer, this thesis aimed to illustrate how management control operated in a family-owned business and to see how and why they do management control differently. In particular, it focused on how international production standards and existing Chinese industry policies translated into a set of the management control practices through a local network within the family-owned business I studied. Based on an ethnographic approach to research, I spent six months in the field, conducted over 30 interviews, several conservations, and reviewed relevant internal documents to understand how management control (MC) techniques with humans cooperated in the company. I also understood how two layers of pressure have shaped company behaviour, and how a company located in a developing country is connecting with global network. I also found there is considerable tension among key actors and investigated how the company responded and managed it. Drawing on Actor Network Theory (ANT), I analysed the interviews from key actors, examined the role of government regulations and customer requirements to see how management control being managed under two layers of pressure, i.e., the government regulations (e.g., labour, tax, environment control) and customer requirement (e.g., quality and production control). Management controls were an obligatory passage point (OPP), and transformation of those elements of Western production requirements and government requirements arrived at the Chinese local factory and influenced management control and budgeting. The findings suggest that management control systems are not only a set of technical procedures, but it is also about managing tensions. This understanding shows a linear perspective on MC practices rather than a social perspective. However, when we use ANT as a theoretical perspective, we see those actors who, being obliged and sandwiched, and controlled by external forces for them to follow. Consequently, human actors must work in an unavoidable OPP. This is the tension they face which constructed mundane practices of MC. Hence, MCs are managing such tensions. This study contributes to management control research by analysing management controls in terms of OPP, extends our understanding by illustrating the role of the government and customers, and our understanding of family-owned business from a management controls perspective in a developing country

    Joutsen / Svanen 2016

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