Outsourcing: Who's threatened? A critical view of outsourcing as a strategic management instrument.

F.J.M. Bosman

Research output: Types of ThesisDoctoral ThesisAcademic

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In the contemporary strategic management process, outsourcing is performed whenever management sees an efficiency opportunity, and employees have no influence on the situation. This research examines the attitudes of technical in-house ICT staff to this work situation, mainly by using the Social Photo Matrix methodology. It has become clear that the ICT staff feel threatened by the constant possibility of ICT outsourcing, and that management has influence on this. However, the expected severity was not expressly present in the anxious feelings displayed by the ICT staff. These findings are explained by using critical theory, especially that of Herbert Marcuse. Marcuse’s theoretical concept of ‘repressive desublimation’ relies on hidden, repressed information, describing the manipulative power of the prevailing capitalist paradigm to repress dialectical, critical thinking and accept the immediate satisfaction of primary needs. This results in the false assumption that the prevailing way of life in contemporary society/organizations is the ‘good life’, while self-fulfilment according to the human essence is repressed. This repression also leads to personal ‘damage’, only not as antithesis in a dialectical, two-dimensional way eliciting anger, frustration, refusal and rejection, but as excessive adaptation and one-dimensionality. In this way, the faculties necessary for the critical assessment of managerial actions (such as outsourcing) are repressed, negatively influencing possibilities for self-fulfilment.
Original languageAmerican English
  • Letiche, H., Supervisor
  • Pelzer, P., Supervisor
  • Lightfoot, G., Supervisor
  • Maas, A.J.J.A., Supervisor, External person
Award date15 Nov 2011
Print ISBNs9789081804707
Electronic ISBNs9789081804707
Publication statusPublished - 15 Nov 2011

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