Internal meetings: the process of decision-making in workplace discourse

Lohrová, Helena (2012). Internal meetings: the process of decision-making in workplace discourse. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.


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The thesis argues that by mapping three selected discursive practices – Explanations, Accounts, and Formulations – and by interpreting their respective roles and interrelations, it is possible to assess how, through talk, decisions are developed and implemented in meetings. Drawing on a longitudinal, year-long observation of business meetings undertaken by managerial teams in a large UK Chamber of Commerce and on analyses of authentic audio data, the thesis investigates how decision making is enacted in meetings discourse in the context of organisational change. A structured, Conversation-analytical approach is employed to examine the transcribed data and develops a macro-/micro- matrix within which to understand the behaviour and influences of the practices on decision-making. The research specifically expands the role of Explanations and furthers the established communicative properties of Accounts and Formulations proposed in the ground-breaking work of Scott and Lyman (1968) and Heritage and Watson (1979), respectively. Most importantly, the analysis identifies the significance of long turns in the meetings data, and documents the link between decision-making and the recurrence and clustering of the three practices in or around these.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of English, Drama and American & Canadian Studies, Department of English Literature
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
P Language and Literature > PE English


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