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School of Business and Management

School Research Seminar Series

10 October 2012

Time: 1:00 - 2:00pm
Venue: Francis Bancroft Building, Room FB4.04/08

Professor Gerlinde Mautner, Vienna University of Economics and Business  

Gerlinde Mautner is Professor at, and Head of the Institute for English Business Communication at the Vienna University of Economics and Business. She pursues research interests located at the interface of language, society and business. Her work also focuses on methodological questions, exploring the opportunities and challenges of interdisciplinary cooperation (e.g., between Critical Discourse Analysis and Critical Management Studies). In recent projects she has studied the influx of marketised language into a variety of lifeworlds, the treatment of language in management textbooks, and the interrelationships between discourse, space, and the law.

Seminar title
Management and Linguistics: Traditions, Trends and Tensions

It is now received wisdom that the social sciences have undergone a “linguistic turn” (Alvesson & Kärreman 2000, Deetz 2003, Musson, Cohen & Tietze 2007, Phillips & Oswick 2012). Equally, it is regarded as a commonplace that at least 80% of a manager’s working time is spent communicating (Whetten & Cameron 1991, 230). Strange, then, that most management curricula do not include any deeper engagement with language, and that most standard textbooks deal with language only cursorily, if at all (Mautner 2012). Discourse may get a look-in, though rarely from a specifically linguistic angle. Conversely, many linguists are reluctant to engage with business and the economy as domains of inquiry, so that an overall picture emerges of management studies and linguistics living in peaceful but detached coexistence (Mautner 2007). As a result, opportunities for dialogue and collaboration are wasted, and valuable insights lost. Using examples from recent research projects (such as Mautner 2010), the talk will make a case for looking at discourse through both a social and linguistic lens, and suggest ways in which such an approach might contribute to Critical Management Education (Reynolds 1998; Cunliffe, Forray & Knights 2002; Cunliffe 2004; Dehler 2009).

Research themes
Communications, Discourse and Narratives

Additional information
The seminar will run from 13:00 to 14:00 (suggested: 50 minute talk and 10 minute Q&A)

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