Public sector business collaborating: a social constructionist perspective.


Dearden, Joseph 2007. Public sector business collaborating: a social constructionist perspective. Thesis
AuthorsDearden, Joseph
Qualification namePhD

This research study explores the perceptions and experiences of individuals involved in the business collaborations of the Coal Authority (TCA) with other public and private sector organisations. The study offers two major contributions to professional knowledge and practice. The first is that the social and behavioural activities associated with the business collaboration process are of as much concern as the economic and structural aspects. The second is a conceptual model and framework which makes sense of the public sector business collaborating process, and identifies behaviours and practices which are perceived by the participants to positively contribute to successful business collaborating and to minimise the risk of inter-organisational collaboration failure. The research accounts underpinning the study are based on the researcher's direct observation, interviews, accounts and life experiences of over fifty individuals that he engaged with during his thirty months involvement within the research process. This was complemented by his reflective diary recording in real time the thought processes from the participants in both the public and private sector involved in business collaborating on a day-to-day basis, as he immersed himself in a purposeful way in the research setting. Twenty-four of the collaborators work for public sector organisations, twenty-nine work in the private sector. Thematic discourse analysis was used to interpret their life experiences and develop the framework around the four perspectives that emerged. The four perspectives are: • The context perspective • The business and strategy perspective • The delivery perspective • The people perspective Personal reflections on the research process and the framework are based on the Kirkpatrick (1967) four level theoretical model for the evaluation of learning and development outcomes. The researcher also describes the changes in behaviour and practices within TCA with regard to the way the people within TCA interact and collaborate with people from other organisations as a result of the study and its findings. Finally, the researcher demonstrates his achievement of the six learning outcomes of his DBA doctoral programme.

KeywordsSocial construction; Business collaboration; Collaborating; Public sector; Coal Authority
PublisherUniversity of Derby
Web address (URL)hdl:10545/317458
File Access Level
File Access Level
Output statusUnpublished
Publication process dates
Deposited27 May 2014, 12:48
Publication dates2007
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