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Historical narratives as strategic resources: an analysis of the Turkish international contracting sector

Duman, D. U., Green, S. D. ORCID: and Larsen, G. D. (2019) Historical narratives as strategic resources: an analysis of the Turkish international contracting sector. Construction Management and Economics, 37 (7). pp. 367-383. ISSN 0144-6193

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1080/01446193.2018.1529416


The Turkish contracting sector has an enviable reputation for operating in high-risk international markets. The sector’s ability to respond to market instability could meaningfully be construed as sectoral-level capability. We aim to demonstrate how history can be mobilised in a formalised ‘strategy text’ to create a strategic narrative on the sectoral level. The Geography of Contractors as published by the Turkish Contractors Association (TCA) ostensively portrays the strategic development of Turkish international contractors over four decades. Such quasi-historical narratives are routinely mobilised for the purposes of creating a shared memory on the sectoral level. The chosen strategy text draws from multiple narrative fragments derived from past experience to generate a strategic agenda for the future. The representation given to multiple voices reflects the pluralistic nature of strategy making praxis. The overarching strategy narrative reflects a performative intent in legitimising some practices whilst discrediting others. Narrative analysis demonstrates the way in which actors, actions and events are positioned within a plot structure, with direct implications for the enactment of future strategic practices. The findings suggest that strategic actions can only ever be identified in retrospect, and that such arguments are always made with an eye on the future.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of the Built Environment > Organisation, People and Technology group
ID Code:79629
Publisher:Taylor & Francis


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