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Integrating organization studies and community psychology: a process model of an organizing sense of place in working lives

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    Rights statement: This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Calvard, T. (2015) Integrating Organization Studies and Community Psychology: A Process Model of an Organizing Sense of Place in Working Lives. Journal of Community Psychology (43:6) 654-686, which has been published in final form at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/jcop.21754/abstract. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)654-686
JournalJournal of Community Psychology
Issue number6
Early online date14 Jul 2015
Publication statusPublished - 2015


In this conceptual paper, I propose to advance thinking about organization theory in community contexts by theorizing about the roles of place and space in working lives. I argue that work in the mainstream of organization studies often downplays contextual aspects of the community-based places that workers inhabit, largely by trying to generalize across them. A colourless language of firms, institutions, and agents can obscure more humanistic, ecological understandings of how workers occupy and make use of various places for supporting their well-being and sense of self. A sense of place (and by implication, space) has the potential to draw together relevant existing work at the organization studies-community psychology interface more comprehensively. I therefore integrate key ideas from this interface with sensemaking theory and present a three-stage process model of an organizing sense of place. I conclude by discussing the implications arising for future research, theorizing, and practice.

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