let me bring to your attention the call for papers for an Organization Studies special issue on Rediscovering and Theorizing Craft in Organizations that I have the pleasure of co-editing with Innan Sasaki, Jochem Kroezen, Roy Suddaby, and Silviya Svejenova
(see also https://journals.sagepub.com/page/oss/call-for-papers and https://journals.sagepub.com/pb-assets/cmscontent/OSS/Craft%20SI%20CfP%20Revised%20Jan%2018%202021-1611161018103.pdf).
We look forward to gathering the best theoretical and empirical work in this fascinating area of research!
Feel free to contact any of the editors in advance for more information.
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Special Issue Call for Papers
Rediscovering and Theorizing Craft in Organization Studies
Guest Editors: Davide Ravasi, Innan Sasaki, Jochem Kroezen, Roy Suddaby, and Silviya Svejenova
Submission deadline: February 28, 2022
We are witnessing a revival of craft in contemporary society. While craft has been equated by some with a primitive and largely obsolete mode of organizing and working, recent research has shown how craft has surprisingly reappeared to reconfigure entire sectors, with examples ranging from beer brewing (Kroezen & Heugens, 2019) and watch-making (Raffaelli, 2019) to urban services like barbering (Ocejo, 2017) and supermarket work (Endrissat, Islam & Noppeney, 2015). Across these settings, craft appears as a fundamental approach to work and organization that can be contrasted with the conventional efficiency-maximizing approaches underpinning mass manufacturing and professional bureaucracy (Fox Miller, 2017). Whereas modern organizations are often configured around a mechanical approach to work that relies on the rationalization and automatization of human production tasks, craft, alternatively, prioritizes human engagement in making and relies on a distinct set of attitudes and skills. Sennett (2008), for example, famously defined craft as a basic human impulse to do "a job well for its own sake". Relatedly, craft rests on a distinctive concern with mastery of skill which relies on practical, material or embodied forms of knowledge that require dedication and a communal (rather than individualist) attitude (Bell & Vachhani, 2020; Holt & Yamauchi, 2019; Tsoukas & Cummings, 1997; Popp & Holt 2016). As such, craft consecrates the value of human touch in making as something that cannot be replicated by a machine.
Historically, craft has appeared to gain social traction during times of industrial revolution. The English Arts and Crafts movement (Morris, 1892; Ruskin, 1849), for example, embraced craft to cherish pre- and anti-industrial forms of work in the wake of the First Industrial Revolution. It appears that the current industrial revolution is triggering a similar movement to re-enchant work and organization in the digital age (Endrissat et al., 2015; Suddaby, Ganzin & Minkus, 2017). The appeal of craft lies in its perceived potential to create meaningful jobs in contradistinction to the disenchanted work typical of industrialized or digitalized work environments (Bell, Mangia, Taylor & Toraldo, 2018; Pratt, Pradies, & Lepisto, 2013). Craft has also been proposed as a force of change that may enable the transition toward a sustainable society (Bell et al., 2018; Moore, 2005). Craft has been associated with forms of production that are deemed more environmentally-friendly (e.g. Weber, Heinze, & DeSoucey, 2007) as well as with paths to betterment at the bottom of the pyramid (Al-Dajani & Marlow, 2013). Relatedly, craft also provides material means for political expression as evidenced by cases of "craftivism" (Greer, 2014), such as the Stitch'nBitch movement (Minahan & Cox, 2007).
Whilst it thus appears that craft will play an increasingly important role in society across the globe, research on the subject has been historically fragmented and marginalized. As such, we think it is time to build on recent efforts toward more dedicated attention and synthesis (Bell et al., 2018), in order to advance theory around the unique processes and practices of craft approaches to work and organization.
For this special issue, we are especially keen to attract work from a variety of perspectives and levels of analysis that can help us understand better when, why and how work is approached or organized as a craft and with what consequences. Below we sketch seven themes that scholars may wish to contribute to, though contributions do not have to be limited to these themes:
Submitting your paper
Please submit your manuscript through the journal's online submission system (http://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/orgstudies). You will need to create a user account if you do not already have one, and you must select the appropriate Special Issue at the "Manuscript Type" option. The Special Issue Editors handle all manuscripts in accordance with the journal's policies and procedures; they expect authors to follow the journal's submission guidelines (http://journals.sagepub.com/home/oss). You can submit your manuscript for this Special Issue between February 14 and February 28, 2022. Informal enquiries to Innan Sasaki, (email@example.com). For administrative support and general queries, you may contact Sophia Tzagaraki, Managing Editor of Organization Studies, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Popp, A., & Holt, R. (2016). Josiah Wedgwood, manufacturing and craft. Journal of Design History, 29(2), 99-119.
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