Release | Reset and restoration. The looming conservative turn of management theory: An extension of Foss et al.

Abstract: This article is a reply to Foss et al.’s (2022) contribution to the special issue of the Scandinavian Journal of Management on The Great Reset of management and organization theory. In their article, the authors make a strong case that “reset thinking” geared towards a more “sustainable” redesign of the global economy promotes extensive state interventionism and cronyism capitalism, and therefore reject the idea of a need for “a fundamental rethink of existing management theory”. Whereas I do agree with the authors on most points, I am less convinced that “existing management theory” will suffice to address the problem of “reset thinking”. In this article, I demonstrate that the economy-bias of existing theories is a gateway for “reset thinking” geared towards an allegedly necessary re-/socialisation of management and organisation. A research agenda on cronyism must therefore be complemented by one on privilege and hierarchy not only as undesirable side-effects of cronyism, but also as desired outcomes of advocacy for specific minorities or missions. As self-identifications with group interests or calls for missions have become popular in management theory, I conclude that this new appetite for privilege might undermine not only the higher ideals of many management theorists, but also the foundations of modern society.

Keywords: The Great Reset, management theory, cronyism, stratification, conservatism, restorism

This article is available for download here or here (before 17 June 2023).

Recommended citation: Roth S. (2023), Reset and restoration. The looming conservative turn of management theory: An extension of Foss et al., Scandinavian Journal of Management, Vol. 39 No. 3, pp. 101278.

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