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Bridging between history and organisation studies: making the case for archival research in construction management

Patel, H. and Green, S. D. (2018) Bridging between history and organisation studies: making the case for archival research in construction management. In: 34th Annual ARCOM Conference, 3-5 September 2018, Belfast, UK, pp. 225-234.

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Abstract/Summary

The construction management (CM) research community makes limited use of archival sources. A plethora of archival sources exist in the form of documents and visual representations and are often found within project or organisational records. Such artefacts tend to be cast as ‘secondary data’ which are seen as complementary to supposed ‘primary data’ such as that derived from interviews. Despite the increasing recognition of archival sources, there remains a paucity of reflexive dialogue on archival methodology within the CM research community. In particular, the issue of emplotment as it relates to the creation of archives and their subsequent interpretation requires methodological attention. Examples are drawn from the current DEGW archive project which seeks to pilot the concept of a 'living archive'. Curation is proposed as an archival research method to address the issue of emplotment. A reflexive account of emplotting archival sources is offered based on two empirical vignettes. It is contended that CM researchers should heed the call of organisational historians for methodological reflexivity which goes beyond taking documentary sources at face value.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Science > School of the Built Environment > Construction Management and Engineering > Business Innovation in Construction
ID Code:80030

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