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Main results

Johtamisopit SuomessaThe most important results of the research project are presented in Johtamisopit Suomessa: Taylorismista innovaatioteorioihin (Management Paradigms in Finland: From Taylorism to innovation theories) (2008, Helsinki: Gaudeamus) book. Further details about the results of the research are presented in twenty scientific articles written during the project (see Publications).

The Management Paradigms in Finland research project looks at management through the important management paradigms of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st century. These paradigms are scientific management, human relations school, structural analysis, organisational culture and innovation theories.

The research results indicate that the companies in Finland have been managed and are still being managed through the power of imported ideas and doctrines. No management innovations, i.e. new management paradigms, have been invented in Finland. When compared with the corresponding development in other Western countries, in Finland there has been a delay in embracing management paradigms.

In Finland management has leaned, particularly, on rational management paradigms, while human oriented paradigms have been left in a subordinate position. According to an earlier research, the role of the government has been important in adopting management paradigms in different countries, and the results of this research indicate this to be the case also in Finland. Especially scientific management and innovation theories have risen to an important position, because the Finnish government has supported the adoption of these paradigms.

In Finland, literature related to scientific management, structural analysis and organisational cultural theories has been translated promptly. However,none of the works of the seminal theorists of the human relations paradigm – one of the internationally most important management paradigms in the 20th century - have been translated to Finnish.

The discussion in general and scientific publications in Finland has been dominated by rational paradigms, particularly by scientific management and structural analyses up until the 1980s. Only since the 1980's, there has been increasing discussion on human oriented theories. Most of the research funding in the management area in the 1970's went towards the structural analysis paradigm, in the 1980's and 1990's towards strategic management and in the beginning of the 2000's towards research related to the innovation paradigm. In the degree level management education, structural analyses dominated teaching and course literature from the 1970s up to 1990's. Also strategic management was strongly represented in the degree level teaching of the 1980's and 1990's. Human resource management (HRM) and innovation theories have increased their popularity in the degree level teaching since the 1990's.





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