Sociomateriality: Challenging the separation of technology, work and organization

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Citation: Wanda J. Orlikowski, Susan V. Scott (2008) Sociomateriality: Challenging the separation of technology, work and organization. The Academy of Management Annals (RSS)

doi: 10.5465/19416520802211644 Wikidata: Q73304769

Tagged: Business (RSS)


In Sociomateriality, Orlikowski and Scott identify a gap in organizational scholarship: a lack of consideration to the role of technology. They identify two essential positions with respect to technology as it is studied in the contexts of organizations: technology as discrete entities and technology as mutually dependent ensembles. They advance a view of sociomateriality as an alternative approach to these two. Sociomateriality takes up the view that technology, organizations, and work are intermingled and that the technical and the social are inseparable.

Theoretical and practical relevance:

This article clearly details the state of research in management literature about how technology and organizations relate or, in the ANT view, are inseparable. Reviewing these approaches pushes the researcher to clarify the concepts and relationships they are examining, and to weigh alternate approaches.