DRE 6004 Organisation Science

DRE 6004 Organisation Science

Course code: 
DRE 6004
Leadership and Organizational Behaviour
Course coordinator: 
Thorvald Hærem
Course name in Norwegian: 
Organisation Science
Product category: 
PhD Leadership and Organisation Courses
2023 Autumn
Active status: 
Level of study: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

Through lectures and participat presentationd the course covers important contributions within major research programmes and perspectives in organization science, how programmes and perspectives relate to different views on the nature of reality in social science

Learning outcomes - Knowledge

After completion participant should be familiar with major research programs or research areas in organizational science, their underlying assumptions and empirical research methods. Major developments and contributions are discussed on the basis of classical texts as well as authoritative overviews and reviews. Candidates will get a better understanding of the origin and status of key concepts, models and theories debated in current research.

Learning outcomes - Skills

The course strengthen participants’ ability to understand and critically evaluate different types of research contributions,  and also to position their own ideas and contributions in the context of existing knowledge

General Competence

Have obtained an in depth understanding of the history of the field, the differet types of contributions and how research programmes and perspectives develop. 

Course content

Organisation science is a broad and multidisciplinary field, drawing upon sociology, psychology and economics. This course has three major purposes: 1) to familiarise students with major classical contributions, 2) to follow the development of major modern perspectives, and 3) to identify present challenges and research frontiers. A key concern is how various perspectives and insight may be relevant to management issues.


Teaching and learning activities

The course will organised over 5 whole day meetings, in sections of 2 x 3 hours. Each section covers one topic in the area of organisation research. 1) The first day consist of lectures and discussion. The rest of the course 2) participants prepare presentations, and 3) these contributions will be the basis for class discussions.

Day 1:
Overview and challenges – classical perspectives and organizations as tools

The first day consists of two lectures and discussion and planning of participants’ presentations. The first lecture reflects upon the current status of the discipline, emphasising somewhat different aspects of earlier theory development and research. This provides a set of frames for a more systematic discussion of contributions in set of key areas of organisation theory. The second lecture covers classical contributions, with an emphasis on the rational perspective on organizations as tools that dominated the first decades of systematic organization theory research. All participants will sign up for class presentations. There is one week for preparations.

The following 4 days, participants present key areas of organisation research as a basis for class discussions. A key issue is how various contributions relate to the present research frontier. While some of these areas can be regarded as comprehensive research programmes, other areas are characterised by a set of issues that may be approached in various ways.

Decision-making in organizations
Organization and environment

Day 3
Social constructivism and culture
Knowledge and learning

Day 4
Economic organization theory
New institutional theory

Day 5
New perspectives
Summary and discussion


Software tools
No specified computer-based tools are required.
Additional information



Enrollment in a PhD programme is a general requirement for participation in PhD courses at BI Norwegian Business School.
External candidates are kindly asked to attach confirmation of enrollment in a PhD programme when signing up for a course. Other candidates may be allowed to sit in on courses by approval of the course leader. Sitting in on a course does not permit registration for the course, handing in exams or gaining credits for the course. Course certificates or confirmation letters will not be issued for sitting in on courses.

Required prerequisite knowledge


Exam categoryWeightInvigilationDurationGroupingComment exam
Exam category:
Form of assessment:
Written submission
Exam code:
Grading scale:
Grading rules:
Internal examiner
Examination when next scheduled course
100No1 Month(s)Individual Individual paper (15 pages) The paper should be original work, and be written specifically for this course.
Exam category:Submission
Form of assessment:Written submission
Grouping (size):Individual
Duration:1 Month(s)
Comment:Individual paper (15 pages) The paper should be original work, and be written specifically for this course.
Exam code:DRE60041
Grading scale:Pass/fail
Resit:Examination when next scheduled course
Type of Assessment: 
Ordinary examination
Total weight: 
Student workload
Group work / Assignments
140 Hour(s)
Specified learning activities.
30 Hour(s)
Sum workload: 

A course of 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours. Therefore a course of 6 ECTS credits corresponds to a workload of at least 160 hours.