This talk will adopt a qualitative, field-level approach to examine a case of occupational formation based on an external mandate, or an occupational mandate that is crafted in large part based on the efforts of individuals or groups that are external to an organization. By investigating the case of the formation of the occupational group of sustainability managers in higher education, the seminar will trace the development of this group’s jurisdictional boundaries and their subsequent ongoing navigation of the relationship between their mandate and jurisdiction. The findings in this case, which are based on longitudinal analyses of archival data on the construction of the sustainability managers’ jurisdiction as well as on interviews and fieldwork with sustainability managers, reveal a set of processes by which mandates and jurisdictions can actually diverge in the formation of a new occupational group, a finding which challenges existing assumptions about the natural flow of occupational mandates into jurisdictions. Additionally, the analyses of the navigation of jurisdictional boundaries uncover the processes by which the sustainability managers conceal elements of their work that are aligned with their mandate but outside of their jurisdiction, which sheds light on when and how occupations may work to narrow or conceal their work rather than pursue jurisdictional expansion. Overall, this talk will challenge existing thought on the relationship between occupational mandates and jurisdictions and encourages future scholarship on external mandates, the co-construction of mandates and jurisdictions, and also on processes of jurisdictional narrowing and concealing.
A sandwich lunch will be served in the 8 West foyer at 11.30am.
About the Speaker
Dr Grace Augustine is a Lecturer in the Department of Management at Cass Business School, City, University of London. Prior to joining Cass, Dr Augustine completed a PhD in Management & Organizations and Sociology (joint degree program) at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management and an MSc in Management Research at the University of Oxford Saïd Business School.