The work of Jacques-Bernard Gauthier and new philosophical perspectives in project management
In an editorial in the June/July (2016) issue of Project Management Journal, Jacques-Bernard Gauthier and Ika Lavagnon’s works on ontological and epistemological foundations are identified as being among the new philosophical perspectives in project management.
This report is part of a research project on the structuring of business microcosm related to scientific periodicals. More specifically, this project aims to study the structuring of business practices and strategic practices of the actors operating within a business microcosm currently undergoing major transformation, namely the production of science and the communication of their results. This report is one of the components of this project and focuses on the structuring of the business microcosm within publication of scientific periodicals. The publication of articles in scientific periodicals is growing much faster than the growing number of scientists. Despite these increases, which undoubtedly reflect the dynamism in the world of the publication of scientific periodicals and greater accessibility to publication, scientists express great discomfort at this important part of their research activities. These discomforts are often expressed only from the point of view of the actors of the scientific fields, that is to say, from a scientific-centrist perspective. However, the publication of scientific periodicals involves a group of actors from different industries: suppliers, publishers, aggregators, customers, associations. For our part, we wanted to adopt an economic-centrist perspective. The aim of this report is therefore to present these actors through their corporate structure and their connections. At the end of our study, we can see that the main economic actors form a microcosm evolving around two oligopolies working on international markets (one in the publishing industry and the other in the aggregation industry) composed mainly of private firms, including private investment firms, and that they operate in a low-growth market. We also found that the dynamics of this microcosm is driven by a set of strategic alliances.
The lack of interest of researchers in relation to question of hospital pharmacy management, and the status quo of existing managerial practices serving the reforms, justifies analysis of theoretical foundations of hospital pharmacy management. The objective is twofold. First, provide an overview of the socio-historical eras of the organizational theories in order to position the hospital pharmacy management on the axis of the changing ways of thinking about the organization and management. Secondly, reconsider hospital pharmacy management by the structuration theory (new direction in organization theory). A systematic literature review of the Canadian Journal of Hospital Pharmacy, from 2010 to this day, was performed. The analysis of the theoretical notions discussed in the articles shows that the management of the hospital pharmacy departments stands on the concepts associated with the 'Modern era' of organizational theories. As a result, the hospital pharmacy management focuses on technical aspects. The reconsideration by structuration theory point out the strategic issues for hospital pharmacy practice underlie the interaction between the actors of the pharmacy department and the other stakeholders of the health system. A proper management of the hospital pharmacy department goes beyond the technical aspects. It should also target the development of strategic professional skills of the pharmacists. That said, a substantial work remains to be done to understand the ins and outs of the structuration of the pharmacy practice and the management of its strategic-professional aspects.
David Rainville has successfully completed the requirement for the Master's thesis in Project Management. Entitled "The Conditions of Integration Linked to a Project Team: Case Study of an International Development Team in the Philippines", the thesis is based on the work of Gauthier and St-Pierre (2012). This dissertation was under the direction of Professor Davila-Gomez and the co-direction of Professor Gauthier.
In the course of their communication, the researchers explore the dimension of national cultures as a condition for the integration of members of an international development project team, in like manner as with the disciplinary and organizational dimensions. This exploration bases itself upon case studies as its methodological approach. More precisely, the researchers have focused on the AIME House (a house helping street children in Manilla, the Philippines) as an international development project run by the Virlanie Foundation. Semi-structured interviews as well as sessions for observing the project team took place. The results of this research contribute to the field of Management by affirming that national cultures are an important component in our understanding of the process of integrating the participants in an international development project. Finally, the authors call for more qualitative and quantitative studies that will permit a validation and a deepening of our field of knowledge concerning the integration of project teams in the context of international collaboration.
- Axiology: a basis of reflexivity to study tensions coming from the research on project management practice -
Here is a summary of this presentation: Although reflexive practices promote a return to the philosophical foundations that served as a guide during a research project (Creswell, 2013), very little attention is given to axiology (‘what can be subject to a value judgement’ – free translation) (Universalis, 2015). Since the practice of project management is subject to such judgements (Cicmil, 2006), the practitioner-researcher is forced to deal with influences, arising from various value systems, which can turn into tensions. While being torn between his values as a practitioner and as a researcher, the practitioner-researcher, while interpreting the practices of participants, also confronts his own value system with those of the participants. Boltanski and Thévenot (1991; 2006)’s theory of justification allows us to understand how tensions emanate from the presence of distinct value systems. They represent society with six distinct orders of worth, each having their own proper characteristics. We maintain that a practitioner-researcher lives with tensions emanating from the meeting of orders of worth that come on the one hand from research and on the other hand from practice. : This research contributes to the literature in two ways. First, we set out the two orders of methodological reflexivity (derived from Alvesson and Skoldberg (2009) and from Cunliffe (2003)) and situate axiological tensions within them. Secondly, drawing upon the theory of justification, we theorize these tensions and how they can enhance second-order reflexivity.
Abdullah Afzal has successfully completed the requirement for the Master's thesis in Project Management. Entitled “Le projet clinique du Ministère de la Santé et des Services Sociaux du Québec - État de la situation dix ans après et leçons à tirer pour les réformes à venir/(Clinical Project of the Ministry of Health and Social Services in Québec - Current status after ten years and lessons to be learned for future reforms)”, was produced under the direction of Jacques-Bernard Gauthier.