AOM 2020: CPOS Panel presentation



Broadening Our Sight: Seeing Change Differently through Psychoanalysis


This interactive workshop is designed to explore the use of psychoanalysis in studying and facilitating organizational change. This year’s theme “20/20: Broadening our Sight” invites us to look beyond the longstanding dichotomies (e.g., manifest/latent, conscious/unconscious, negative/positive) embedded in the theory and practice of organizational change. Psychoanalysis offers scholars and practitioners one way to transcend the dichotomies and paradoxes of studying and facilitating organizational change. Some scholars view psychoanalysis as a means for interpreting workplace subjectivity and exposing exploitative uses of power (Fotaki et al., 2012; Arnaud, 2012); vigilance is needed, however, as the rich, liberating resources of psychoanalysis can “potentially be appropriated in ways that are dangerous” (Eda Ulus, personal communication; Frosh & Baraitser, 2008). These tensions raise a number of important questions for psychoanalytically informed organizational change practitioners and scholars: Can psychoanalysis illuminate resistance to change by helping us “see” it differently? Can a psychoanalytically informed approach create more ethical and equitable change processes? Or, does a psychoanalytic approach reinforce the power differentials it purports to surface? To probe these questions, we will guide participants in a discussion and application of psychoanalytic frameworks. This workshop will benefit researchers and practitioners who, regardless of career stage, wish to engage with the complexities of psychoanalysis. Participants will leave the workshop with a better understanding of a range of psychoanalytic perspectives and how psychoanalysis may contribute to “broadening our sight” in ways that foster more equitable, healthy, and enriching human relations in organizational change efforts.

Watch the videos below!