Diversity and Affirmative Action in Public Service

By Walter D. Broadnax | Go to book overview

Conclusion

The training program is adaptable to formats such as seminars, workshops, regularized small group meetings, and continuing education and extension programs. Ideally, the authors would like to see such training built into staff development programs within human service agencies and the curriculum of professional schools. The provision of this training will be a social change in and of itself, which will lead to further social change initiated by women who have the necessary decision-making, reinforcement, and implementation power to bring about changes from within.

Nancy R. Hooyman and Judith S. Kaplan, University of Minnesota


The Coming Death of Administrative Man

Contemporary theories of organization are largely theories about men in organizations, by men, and for men. For this reason, it should not be surprising (nor considered coincidental) that the key paradigmatic commitment of organizational analysis is expressed by the concept of administrative man. Nor should it be surprising that the behavior of most organizational practitioners is well characterized by this idea. Administrative man provides not only a starting point from which all major components of the rational model of organization flow, but also a model for the culturally dominant version of how people in organizations should act.

In marked contrast to this view of organizational life, some feminist theorists are developing alternative models of organization, based primarily on their experience in the women's movement. Both women's rights groups and radical feminists are experimenting with new patterns of group activity which substantially depart from the rational model of administration. In this article, we will ask how these new patterns may affect the way individuals think about and consequently behave in complex organizations. After describing the concept of administrative man, we will focus on alternative theories of organization developed in the women's movement. We will then consider the implications of these ideas for the future of organizations.


Concept of Administrative Man

The concept of administrative man can be traced to a series of writings appearing in the late '40s and early '50s, involving most prominently the organization theo-

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