Organizational ignorance: towards a managerial perspective on the unknown

Joanne Roberts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article aims to bring organizational ignorance to the attention of management scholars and practitioners and thereby initiate the development of a managerial perspective on the unknown. Although managing every aspect of the unknown is beyond reach, the development of an appreciation of organizational ignorance can offer a valuable means of reflecting on management issues, particularly given the bounded rationality of organizational actors in contexts characterized by ever increasing supplies of knowledge and information, growing complexity, and the need to respond quickly to opportunities and challenges. The article begins with an account of why organizational ignorance warrants attention. The nature of ignorance and organizational ignorance is then considered and a typology of organizational ignorance is presented. The article concludes with a call for the development of a managerial perspective on the unknown, together with the elaboration of research questions that can usefully direct future investigations into organizational ignorance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-236
JournalManagement Learning
Volume44
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2012

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