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Veranstaltungen · Universität Innsbruck · Medizinische Universität Innsbruck

Montag, 19.02.2024


What Do Corporations Want?: Communicative Capitalism and Authority in ‘Responsible’ Firms

16:15 - 17:00 Uhr
Fakultätssitzungssaal, 3. Stock, Sowi, Universitätsstraße 15, 6020 Innsbruck

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Tim Kuhn

Professor of Communication, University of Colorado Boulde

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Under late capitalism, ‘corporate purpose’ has become a societal battleground. I argue that understanding how corporations pursue purpose requires that we see them not as stable entities guided by solitary aims, but as complex communication practices continually bound up in struggles over meaning and action. Drawing on a unique combination of Communicative Constitution of Organization and Deleuzian new materialist thinking, I show how authority—rendered as promises of value and claims to property—is the driving force in firms’ existence and operations. Drawing on a study of firms obligated to serve pro-social goals alongside profitability, I illustrate how oversimplifying purpose paradoxically disorders their practices, yet can foster new forms of imagination for both firms and analysts’ engagement with them.


Insitut für Organisation und Lernen in Koopration mit dem FSP EPoS