New Class SOCI 159

SOCI 159 Organizational Cultures of Innovation and Sustainability: An Israeli Perspective

  • Spring 2014
  • Prof. Aviad E. Raz
  • Time and place: Tues/Thurs 8:00-9:20am
  • Room: HSS (Humanities & Social Science Building) 1128A.
  • Office hours: Tues/Thurs from 9:30-10:30am
  • Office location: Social Science 499

This course introduces sociological, as well as managerial and psychological, approaches to the concept of “organizational culture” and its applications, focusing on innovation and sustainability in the US-Israel context. The course begins with the required background in organizational theories and models, as well as with an overview of the economic structure in Israel as compared to the US.  We then focus on a methodology for measuring the efficiency of organizational cultures, continuing with issues of innovation and sustainability as they are manifested in research and development, corporate responsibility, human resource management, and service management. Israeli case studies will be discussed to shed light on these issues, with a focus on combining research and implementation in the context of OD (organizational development) and OC (organizational counseling).


The grade consists of participation (10%) and a final paper (90%).

Students will be required to participate in the discussion of the readings throughout the quarter. Each student is expected to provide leading comments for the discussion regarding at least one major reading (the exact number of times will in part be determined by the number of students in the seminar). The idea is to have each student select a reading of their choice for commenting. Feel free to email me your comments beforehand for feedback. The larger point of all of this is to encourage you to be active rather than passive learners, and to develop your own informed opinions on seminar topics.  The main goal of the seminar is for each participant to produce a research or review paper.

I. From mid-quarter, everyone will submit and present (5 minutes) plans for your papers-in-progress, including a statement of your research question and a first stab at a literature review. If you would like to start earlier, let me know. Feel free to email me your synopsis for feedback before and after presentation. Presentations should be scheduled ahead at your earliest convenience.

II. Your paper proposal should be presented (5-10 minutes) and discussed (5-10 minutes) during the last 2 classes, on a date that you choose, subject to availability. This draft is due to everyone in class no later than the night before the course meeting at which it is to be discussed.

III. One ~15-page paper due by finals week. The paper can be a research proposal, with a research question and relevant review of the literature, similar to what you would send as a grant application; or a case-study, similar to what we did in class.


Readings that appear in the following schedule are available as library e-reserve course downloads.

Weekly schedule and reading assignments

Introduction and Overview: What is “Organizational Culture”?

Barley, S. & Kunda G. 1992. “Design and Devotion: Surges of Rational and Normative Ideologies of Control in Managerial Discourse.” ASQ 37:363-399

Models of Organizational Culture: The Managerial approach

Schein, E. 1990. Organizational Culture. American Psychologist, Feb. 109-119

Alvesson, M. and S. Sveningsson (2008). Changing Organizational Culture. NY: Routledge. “Organizational change” and “organizational culture and change”, Pp. 13-44

Models of Organizational Culture: The Sociological-critical approach

Martin, Joanne. 1992. Cultures in Organizations: Three Perspectives. Oxford: OxfordUniversity Press. Pp. 3-21

Harris, L. & A. Crane. (2002). “The Greening of Organizational Culture.” Jou of Org Change Management 15(3): 214-234

Diagnosing and measuring organizational culture

Cameron, R. E. & Quinn, R. E. (2005). Diagnosing & Changing Organizational Culture. Jossey-Bass

 Innovation: Cultural, Organizational, and Psychological approaches

 Shane, S. & L. Kolvereid (1995). “National environment, strategy, and new venture performance: a three country study.” Journal of Small Business Management, 33,2, 37-51

Büschgens, T. A. Bausch, D. Balkin. (2013). “Organizational Culture and Innovation: A Meta-Analytic Review,” Journal of Product Innovation Management Early View (Online Version of Record published before inclusion in an issue),;jsessionid=73578A427A776D4D4A162AF977877A94.d03t03

Innovation as Organizational Strategy – the Design School

Dyson, R. (2004). “Strategic development and SWOT analysis at the University of Warwick”. European Journal of Operational Research 152: 631–640

L.C. Koo, H. Koo. 2007. Holistic approach for diagnosing, prioritising, implementing and monitoring effective strategies through synergetic fusion of SWOT, Balanced Scorecard and QFD. World Review of Entrepreneurship, Management and Sustainable Development 3,1,62-78

Innovation as Organizational Strategy – the Culture School

Crossan, M. & I. Berdrow (2003). Organizational learning and strategic renewal. Strategic Management Journal. 24, 11, 1087–1105

Innovation through hybridization

Raz, Aviad (1999). “The Hybridization of Organizational Culture,” Studies in Cultures, Organizations and Societies, 12:1-30.

Organizational Culture of Innovation in Israel: Start-Up Nation?

Senor, D., & Singer, S. (2009). Introduction and Conclusion of Start-Up Nation: The Story of Israel’s Economic  Miracle. NY: Twelve.

Senor, D. and S. Singer (2010). “What Next for the Start-Up Nation?” The Wilson Quarterly 34, No. 3 pp. 62-66

Innovation in R&D

Breznitz, D. (2005). Collaborative Public Space in a National Innovation System: A Case Study of the Israeli Military’s Impact on the Software Industry. Industry and Innovation,

Vol. 12, No. 1, 31–64

Innovation in HRM

Lewis, R., & R. Heckman (2006). Talent management: A critical review. Human Resource Management Review 16, 139–154

Organizational Culture Barriers to Innovation

Raz, A. & E. Blank. (2008). “Ambiguous Professionalism: Managing Service Quality and Efficiency in an Israeli Call Center”, New Technology, Work & Employment 22(1): 83-97

Sustainability: Organizational Culture Approach

Linnenluecke, M., A. Griffiths (2010). “Corporate sustainability and organizational culture.” Journal of World Business 45(4): 357-366

Michlin, G. & H. Lee (2006). Netafim: Migrating from Products to Solutions. StanfordGraduateSchool of Business, Case Study GS-46

Innovation and Sustainability?

 Leach, M., J. Rockström, P. Raskin, I. Scoones, A. C. Stirling, A. Smith, J. Thompson, E. Millstone, A. Ely, E. Arond, C. Folke, and P. Olsson. 2012. “Transforming innovation for sustainability.” Ecology and Society 17(2): 11-20



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: