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Värdeladdad organisering: kategoriers betydelse för statsutvecklingsarbete
Stockholm University.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Stockholm Centre for Organizational Research (SCORE).
2016 (Swedish)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The topic of this report is the organising of on-going urban developments taking place within the municipality of Varberg. Large, public initiatives on urban planning often run over long time periods, involve multiple actors in society, and are characterised by uncertainty and lack of information. With the help of organisation theory on social categories we show how room for manoeuvre and conditions for activity are created in the on-going developments in Varberg. Our analysis highlights in particular two categories that are governing the urban planning of the municipality: (a) three change processes are organised into one single “City development project” and (b) the overarching governance is articulated through a vision statement for the municipality to become the creative centre of the west coast in year 2025. Categories play a dual role as they both enable and constrain organizational as well as individual behaviour. More specifically, the study shows how some projects, such as the sub-project about the new residential neighbourhood West Port (Västerport) by the sea, and some ideas, such as the assumption that urban development leads creativity are highlighted and prioritised as a consequence of the categories identified. However, the study also reveals how, simultaneously, other projects and issues are downplayed or remain in the background. The findings of the study of Varberg open up for further reflections about democratic implications of the use of organisational categories, that often, when they are taken on-board, are perceived as natural and neutral, are valued because they decrease “noise” and give impetus for municipal development. Another side of the use of categories, however, is about what questions, issues and perspectives that are sorted out and excluded through such processes of categorisations and what actor groups in society are not allowed to make their voices heard and to influence such change processes.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm, 2016.
, Scores rapportserie
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-133423OAI: diva2:967380
Available from: 2016-09-07 Created: 2016-09-07 Last updated: 2016-09-08

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Grafström, MariaTamm Hallström, Kristina
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Stockholm UniversityStockholm Centre for Organizational Research (SCORE)
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