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Welcome to what I euphemistically call The Polymatheia Project. Polymatheia (Greek: Πολυμάθεια) in Greek mythology was one of the three Muses recognized at Sicyon. Her name literally means "much knowledge, erudition." And a "polymath" is a person of wide-ranging knowledge or learning. I have put together an annotated bibliography of writers on the subject of organizational change management and organizational development."


To all of you who have contributed so far, many thanks. I picked the name Polymatheia because she was the muse of interdisciplinary knowledge and I was in the Interdisciplinary Doctorate Program at Washington State University. The literature review for my dissertation on organizational change management (OCM) was a meta-analysis on the topic.

A leading authority on organizational sociology is W. Richard Scott. In the preface to his latest book, he says:


"If a naive scholar strides into the maelstrom of institutional/organizational scholarship and research without assistance, he or she will emerge with a migraine if not a conclusion and will be hard pressed to ascertain what the central discussion was, let alone how to productively join the conversation."

Organizational change management and organizational development are drawn from a diverse set of interdisciplinary fields like psychology, management, sociology, political science, communication and anthropology. This bibliography attempts to encompass these many fields of thought.

A great deal of this annotated bibliography is built on the work of Dr. Peter Vaill. His work is titled “An Annotated Bibliography of Foundational Literature in Organizational Behavior and Development” (1996, revised 2006). I have augmented Dr. Vaill’s work with my own research and the help of members of the Organizational Development Network. 


This bibliography covers the post-modernist period of 1933 to 2020. I would be remiss if I did not advise you to read earlier works by Sun Tzu, Machiavelli, Hegel, Nietzche, Taylor, de Toqueville and Weber.


Annotated Bibliography


Aamodt, M.G. (2013). Industrial/Organizational Psychology: An Applied Approach. Belmont, CA. Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.


            Strikes a balance between research, theory, and application. Helps students discover the relevance of industrial/organizational psychology in everyday life through practical application as they analyze topics such as resume writing, interview survival, job description authoring, performance appraisal, employment law, job satisfaction, work motivation, and leadership. This text retains its focus on aiding students in conceptualizing complex issues through the use of numerous charts, tables, flowcharts, and exercises.


Abegglen, J.C. (1958). The Japanese Factory. Glencoe, IL: Free Press.


                        This book is a classic of the sociological literature. It was on reading lists in the early days of the OB&D field, but there was no hint that it might be a forerunner of an explosion of interest and research on the nature of Japanese organizations and management.


Ackoff, R. L. (1972). Redesigning the Future. New York, NY: Wiley.


            Ackoff is a management theorist and philosopher, not an organizational behavior specialist per se. He is one of the inventors of the field of Operations Research and of Strategic Management. He is one of the major sources of ideas about so-called "systems thinking." Along with writers like Barnard*, Drucker*, and Bennis*, he is one of the most influential thinkers on management since World War II, and continues to be a major thinker and innovator into the 1990's.


Adams, J.D. (1973).  Theory and Method in Organization Development. Arlington, VA: NTL



            This book contained papers that had been presented at a conference sponsored by the NTL Institute (Bradford*) called the "Conference on New Technology in Organization Development," held in Washington DC in December, 1972. Many well-known O.D. writers' and consultants' work is contained in this book, including Warner Burke, Jerry Harvey, Charles Krone, and Peter Vaill.


Addison-Wesley Series in Organization Development, Reading, MA: 1969.


            A series of books that made the theory and practice of Organization Development widely available to managers and consultants. The original six books, which appeared as a boxed set, were:


            Richard Beckhard, Organization Development: Strategies and Models.

            Warren Bennis, Organization Development: Its Nature, Origins, and Prospects.

            Edgar Schein, Process Consultation: Its Role in Organization Development.

            Richard Walton, Interpersonal Peacemaking: Confrontations and Third-Party Consultation.

            Robert Blake and Jane Mouton, Building a Dynamic Corporation through Grid Organization Development.

            Paul Lawrence and Jay Lorsch, Developing Organizations.


Adler, N. J. (1986). International Dimensions of Organizational Behavior. Boston, MA: Kent

            Publishing Company.


            Adler had been developing materials for this book for approximately the previous decade and did her doctoral work at UCLA on the subject. While the book cannot properly be called foundational to the field of Organizational Behavior, it was the first attempt to deal with the field cross-culturally, and as such is of substantial historical importance.


Anderson, D.L. (2010) Organization Development: The Process of Leading Organizational Change. Thousand Oaks, Ca. Sage Publications.


            Covers classic and contemporary organization development (OD) techniques, this is a comprehensive text on individual, team, and organizational change. Incorporating OD ethics and values into each chapter, Donald L. Anderson provides discussion of the real-world application of these theoretical ideas. In-depth case studies that follow major content chapters allow students to immediately apply what they have learned. In today’s challenging environment of increased globalization, rapidly changing technologies, economic pressures, and expectations in the contemporary workforce, this book is an essential tool.


Argyris, C. (1957).  Personality and Organization. New York, NY: Harper & Bros.


            An original and enormously influential statement of the thesis that machine-like bureaucracies are antithetical to human nature and mental health. Argyris has authored several other foundational books in the succeeding thirty-five years. He is arguably the source of the current interest in "learning organizations" through his book (with Donald Schon), Organizational Learning: A Theory of Action Perspective, Addison-Wesley, 1978. He has also made major statements about leadership, the nature of "action science," and has written extensively about Organization Development consulting.


Asch, S.E. (1952). Social Psychology. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.


            Sourcebook for basic formulations in all of social psychology with particular value in group norms and social influence.


Athos, A. G. and J.J. Gabarro (1978). Interpersonal Behavior: Communication and

            Understanding in Relationships. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.


              Second of two Harvard Business School books containing theory, research, and case studies applying Carl Rogers' ideas to organizational life.


Bales, R.F. (1950). Interaction Process Analysis. Chicago, IL. University of Chicago Press.


            Bales created a widely-known scheme for analyzing interaction patterns in small groups. In this book, he developed twelve different kinds of roles that people play in groups and showed how the group could be analyzed in terms of the interplay of these roles. Terms like "gatekeeper" and "task-oriented' probably date from terminology developed by Bales. He went on to make many other distinguished contributions to social psychology, but the analytical methods of this book were the main resources utilized by the growing OB&D field.


Barnard, C. I. (1938). The Functions of the Executive. Boston, MA. Harvard University Press.


            Probably the most influential management theory of the 20th century. More relevant to the contemporary scene than many suppose it to be. Barnard is sometimes seen as an apostle of ultra-rationalism in management, but a close reading will show that he was well aware of and approving of the subjective, artistic side of management.


Bass, B. (1960). Leadership, Psychology and Organizational Behavior. New York, NY: Harper.


            This book, with a gigantic bibliography, was Bass's first major publication on leadership. He continues to be one of the most influential contributors on the social psychology of leadership, having lately been primarily interested in so-called "transformational leadership." Bass offered the useful distinction between attempted, successful, and effective leadership. "Attempted" is the initiative by the leader; "successful" means that people did what the leader was trying to get them to do; and "effective" means that what people did got the job done and didn't create other harmful side effects. The use of the phrase "organizational behavior" in the title of this book may be its first public appearance.



Benedict, R. (1959). Patterns of Culture. Boston: Houghton-Mifflin.


            Somewhat like Abegglen's, Benedict's book was on most Organizational Behavior reading lists. It was a dimension of the field "to be aware of." The book quickly became a classic piece of scholarship, but it was to be nearly two more decades before books about culture specifically addressed to the Organizational Behavior field began to appear.


Bennis, W.G., K. Benne, and R. Chin (1961). The Planning of Change. New York, NY: Holt,

            Rinehart, and Winston.


            This book did as much or more than any other to articulate what the field of Organization Development might be. While individual readings are somewhat dated, the editors' various section introductions can still be read for basic and original ideas about planning organizational change and consulting. The senior editor continues to be a major voice in the field; the other two men have passed away.


____________. (1966). Changing Organizations. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.


            A collection of Bennis's best essays on leadership and organizations. Widely quoted.


___________, and P. Slater (1968). The Temporary Society. New York, NY: Harper & Row.


            A critique of organizations and society with the turbulent 'sixties exerting a powerful influence on the authors' thinking; a harbinger of the current interest in chaos, turbulence, chronic instability. Also relevant to those studying loneliness, disconnectedness, and anaclitic depression. This book has been republished in 1998 by Jossey-Bass on the thirtieth anniversary of its original publication.


___________ (1993). An Invented Life. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.


            Warren Bennis's autobiography, containing reminiscences from his five decades of leadership of the OB&D field.


Berelson, B., and G. Steiner (1964). Human Behavior: An Inventory of Scientific Findings. New

            York: Harcourt, Brace & World.


            "Berelson and Steiner" was a matter of considerable excitement and debate in the 1960's. They had undertaken to compress into one volume all the research-based knowledge that existed about human behavior. The intent was to more adequately ground future research.


Bion, W.R. (1961). Experiences in Groups. New York, NY. Basic Books.


            Theories of group behavior by one of the founding members of the Tavistock Institute of Human Relations, London. More influential in the 1990's than ever before, due to the efforts of Professor Jerry B. Harvey* of George Washington University.


Blake, R. R. and J. S. Mouton (1964). The Managerial Grid.  Houston, TX. Gulf Publishing.


            Blake and Mouton have been "household words" in Organization Development from its inception. Many writers credit Blake with inventing the phrase. A distinguished social psychologist prior to the rise of the O.D. field, Blake brought a vast knowledge of small group and intergroup research and theory to bear on problems of organizational effectiveness. By the early 1960's, Blake and Mouton, through their company, Scientific Methods Inc., had developed a multi-year, six phase program of planned change that could be tailored to any organization. This program was the first of its kind.


_________________ (1976). Consultation. Reading MA: Addison-Wesley.


            This book did not have the impact that the authors intended, but it remains useful for historical reasons. The authors erected a framework (called the "Consulcube") that generated 100 distinctly different types of O.D. consulting situations. For each such situation, they cite O.D. literature that provides guidance on how to handle that particular type of situation. In the process an enormous range of O.D. literature is surveyed and interpreted.


Blau, P. (1956). Bureaucracy in Modern Society. New York, NY: Random House.


            Along with books by Merton, Selznick, and Gouldner, this is one of the studies by the "bureaucratic sociologists," a very influential school of thought in the 1950's and 1960's. Much of their thinking stemmed originally from the work of Talcott Parsons.


Bolman, L.G., Deal, T.E. (1991). Reframing Organizations: Artistry, Choice, and Leadership. San Francisco, Ca. Jossey-Bass Publishers.


            This text gives insights into the four frames of leadership and gives in depth explanations about theories of leadership styles. It was helpful in explaining how different organizations work and how leaders in organizations lead. A good integration of theory in organizations but the book could have easily been half the volume. Perhaps it was the long samples, but I got it without the long explanations. But then, perhaps I would have received it better had I been a business executive rather than an academic.


Boone, L, and D. Bowen (1984). Great Writings in Management and Organizational Behavior. 

            New York, NY: Macmillan.


            This book is an excellent repository of classic articles in the field. One of its best features is a retrospective comment by a contemporary scholar.


Bradford, L., J.R. Gibb, and K.D. Benne (1964). T-Group Theory and Laboratory Method:

            Innovation in Re-education. New York, NY: John Wiley.


            An explanation of what T groups (aka Sensitivity Training groups, Encounter Groups) are all about. The authors are founding members of the NTL Institute for Applied Behavioral Science. NTL  ("National Training Laboratories") was a training and development spin-off from the National Education Association. Beginning in 1947, it pioneered the T group as a powerful  method of human relations learning and training. In the early 1960's, a small group of academic and corporate members began meeting to discuss ways that NTL methods could be used in on-going organizations. Dr. Jerry Harvey* was NTL's principal representative in these discussions.  Out of it emerged "the Industrial Consortium" (1965) and later the O.D. Network (1966), which is still the primary professional association for O.D. professionals.


Brown, J.A.C. (1954). The Social Psychology of Industry. Baltimore, MD: Pelican Books.


            A summary of the state of the art in the 1950's and 1960's from a British perspective.


Burke, W. W. (1972). Contemporary Organization Development: Conceptual Orientations and

            Interventions.  Washington DC:  NTL Institute of the National Education



            Burke was Executive Director of the OD Network at the time he published this compilation of presentations from the 1971 Fall Meetings in New York of the Organization Development Network.  Burke has been a prolific writer in the field of O.D. from the late 1960's until the present day.


Burke, W.W. (1992), Organization Development: A Process of Learning and Changing (2nd ed.). Reading, MA. Addison-Wesley Publishing.


            A comprehensive and up-to-date overview of the field of organizational development. Written for managers, executives, administrators, practitioners, and students, the book takes an in-depth look at organizational development with a particular emphasis on the importance of learning and change. Invaluable for determining how organizational change should proceed and be conducted.


Burke, W.W. (2002), Organization Change: Theory and Practice (4th ed). Thousand Oaks, CA. Foundations for Organization Science: Sage Publications.


                    Shows how effective organization change is grounded in sound knowledge about human behavior in the workplace. Author W. Warner Burke skillfully integrates theory and research—reviewing various models and cases—with practical applications in diagnosing change issues in organizations. This text offers the latest research and scholarship, additional materials for effective interventions, and new topics and perspectives.


Burns, J. McG. (1978). Leadership. New York, NY: Harper & Row.


            Burns is a political scientist who has written extensively on political leadership, especially Roosevelt. This book advanced the concept of "transformational leadership" and quickly became influential in the Organizational Behavior field. Burns continues to write extensively and exert programmatic leadership within the leadership field.


Burns, T. and G. Stalker (1961). The Management of Innovation. London: Tavistock Publications.


            Burns and Stalker's book contrasted successful and unsuccessful organizations in high tech industries by their “structures.” Successful companies had "organic" structures; less successful ones had "mechanistic" structures. The list of descriptors of each type was one of the first such attempts. "Mechanistic vs. organic thinking" has continued to be a common attribution down to the present day. The method of creating two contrasting "ideal types," one that was traditional and outmoded and another that was more appropriate to the present and future was highly influential and continues as an analytical style to this day.

Carnevale, D.G. (2003). Organizational Development in the Public Sector. Boulder, CO. Westview Press.


This is an excellent supplement to traditional textbooks in the field and is a good addition to readings in organizational behavior and principles of management. Carnevale provides the essentials of OD and more through his strong handling of the field’s underlying values and assumptions.Organizational Development in the Public Sector covers many of the standard OD topics like action research, group dynamics, and coverage of OD as a field of study. There is considerable treatment of change, resistance to change, and defensive conduct concerning transformation in organizations. Carnevale also explores conflict resolution, leadership issues, systems theory, public-private differences, process consultation, a brief history of modern management reform, group dynamics, trust, hierarchy, and labor relations.


Cartwright, D. and A. Zander (1960). Group Dynamics: Research and Theory (2nd ed.). Evanston, IL: Row, Peterson & Co.


            This was an enormously influential book of readings and continues to be relevant. It contained a number of papers that qualify as "seminal;" includes papers by Festinger on cognitive dissonance, Asch* on conformity, Coch and French on resistance to change, and French and Raven on social power.


Combs, A. W., and D. Snygg (1959). Individual Behavior: A Perceptual Approach to Behavior. New York, NY: Harper and Row. Republished as Perceptual Psychology, by A. Combs, A.C. Richards, and F. Richards, Lanham MD: University Press of America, 1988.


            This book takes a "perceptual approach" to human psychology. It explores the meaning of the well-known phrase that reality is in the eye of the beholder. The book has had wide influence and is actually more consistent with the state of clinical psychology today than it was when it first appeared. This school of psychology was central to Harvard's course on listening. Recently, two other scholars have published new applications of Combs' and Snygg's ideas - see Caine, R.N., and G. Caine. Unleashing the Power of Perceptual Change, and Education on the Edge of Possibility, both published in Alexandria VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, 1997.


Crosby, R.P. (2011). Cultural Change in Organizations: A Guide to Leadership and Bottom-line Results. ___, Vivo! Publishing.


            Tells how to create a culture that forges a powerful synthesis between management authority and employee participation which leads to striking results in safety, quality, and productivity. It is written from Robert Crosby's extensive experience "in the trenches," that is, within organizations where he works on a regular basis with all employees-hourly to CEO. The examples span hi-tech, nuclear, government (city, county, and federal), manufacturing (union and non-union), the health industry, and non-profit organizations.


Cummings, T.G. and Worley, C.G. (2005). Organization Development and Change (8th ed.). Mason, OH. Thomson South-Western.


            Blends rigor and relevance in a comprehensive and clear presentation. The authors work from a strong theoretical foundation to describe, in practical terms, how behavioral science knowledge can be used to develop organizational strategies, structures, and processes.


Dalton, M. (1959). Men Who Manage: Fusions of Feeling and Theory in Administration. New

            York, NY: Wiley.


            This book was noteworthy in its day, and to some extent still is, as a "participant-observer" research study where Dalton was a member of the system of managers whose behavior he was describing. The research was done covertly, if memory serves, which would not be legal today.


Dowling, W. (1982). Effective Management and the Behavioral Sciences: Conversations from

            "Organizational Dynamics". New York, NY: AMACOM Books.


            Bill Dowling was the founding editor of Organizational Dynamics, an influential journal in the field. Throughout the 1970's, Dowling conducted and published interviews with many of the "big names" in the field, including such people as Herzberg, Likert, Argyris, Skinner, McClelland, Roethlisberger, and Bennis. The interviews are collected in this book.


Drucker, P.F. (1946). The Concept of the Corporation. New York, NY: The John Day Co.


____________(1954). The Practice of Management. New York, NY: Harper.


            These books established Drucker’s reputation originally. The first is a study of General Motors. The second introduces "management by objectives" and a number of other fundamental concepts.


____________. (1969). The Age of Discontinuity. New York, NY: Harper & Row.


This book of Drucker's, along with Emery and Trist, was one of the first to take chaotic change seriously. The prevailing mentality was that change is purposeful, linear, cumulative, and controllable. "Planned change" is a foundational image in the history of the O.D. field. Drucker, Emery, and Trist, and a few others, however, began to question all these assumptions. In 1996, we are still trying to learn to think about turbulence since  rationalistic ideas about change are so deeply ingrained. It would not be a waste of time to try to research more thoroughly the roots of thinking about chaos in managerial and organizational studies.


Emery, F. E. and E.L. Trist. The Causal Texture of Organizational Environments.

            Human Relations, vol. 18, 1965, pp. 21-32.


           This article virtually founded the study of how organizational operations are affected by different degrees of turbulence in the environment. The authors use the term "turbulent fields," where "the ground itself is moving," to discuss the same phenomena that chaos theorists and phrases like "permanent white water" are addressing at the turn of the century. Emery and Trist's paper is one of the most prophetic in the entire management literature. So far as is known, Emery and Trist never developed their concept of turbulent fields in further publications, although awareness of the instabilities of the post-industrial environment permeated the work of each for the next twenty-five years.


           Emery and Trist were also leaders of the so-called "socio-technical systems" approach to planned organizational change - a body of theory and practice which they originated while at the Tavistock Institute of Human Relations in London. "Socio-tech" comprised a number of fascinating change projects in various parts of the world, but although it was a well-known body of ideas, comprehensive published books and articles about it were difficult to come by in the 1950's-1970's.  In the 1990's, Trist* and his colleagues endeavored to summarize and reinterpret that socio-technical systems approach in a three volume series published by the University of Pennsylvania. See also treatments of socio-tech in Kleiner* and Weisbord (1987).


Fiedler, F. (1967). A Theory of Leadership Effectiveness. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. 


            One of the first "contingency theories" of leadership, in which it is argued that the best style for a leader depends on other variables in the situation. Fiedler presents a theory of what these variables are and performs  empirical tests of his theory in live situations. (Tannenbaum and Schmidt 1958).


French, W. L., Jr., and C.H. Bell (1972). Organization Development: Behavioral Science

            Interventions for Organizational Improvement. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.


              One of the first, perhaps the first, academic textbooks in O.D. Widely influential. Went through several subsequent editions. Still in print.


French, W. L., Jr., and C.H. Bell (1999). Organization Development: Behavioral Science

            Interventions for Organizational Improvement (6th ed.). Englewood Cliffs, NJ:



            Appropriate for courses in Organization Development, this new edition explores the improvement of organizations through planned, systematic, long-range efforts focused on the organization's culture and its human and social processes. The authors present a concise and comprehensive exposition of the theory, practice, and research related to organization development. The Sixth Edition reflects the most recent developments, advances and expansions, and research in the area of OD. KEY TOPICS: Adds and updates new material to provide the most current information available. Strengthens coverage by adding new interventions and new material. Offers a more lively tone and writing style. Emphasizes the ever changing paradigms in OD theory and describes several new and important interventions in considerable detail. Sets discussions in the rapidly-evolving contexts of globalization, intensified competition and collaboration, Total Quality Management (TQM) and large-scale organizational change. Provides excellent coverage of the organization and its dynamics for managers and professionals.


Gardner, J.W. (1961) Excellence: Can We Be Equal and Excellent Too? New York, NY: Harper & Row.


            This was a widely read book in the 1960's and foreshadowed Peter Vaill's* and Tom Peters' later emphasis on the same subject. Gardner had been a Presidential Cabinet member. He later founded Common Cause. He is still producing a stream of influential papers on leadership.


Gerth, H.H. and C.W. Mills (1958). From Max Weber: Essays in Sociology. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.


            This book of excerpts and interpretations was a very popular introduction to Weber. Mills also wrote White Collar, one of the first studies of middle managers.


Glover, J.D. and R.M. Hower (1957). The Administrator: Cases on Human Relations in Business. Homewood, IL: Richard D. Irwin, Inc.


            This was a casebook used in various editions for nearly three decades at the Harvard Business School. In its earlier editions, it embodied the "classic" view of the general manager which had developed at that school.


Godwyn, M. & Hoffer-Gittel, J. (2011). Sociology of Organizations: Structures and Relationships. Los Angeles, CA. Sage Publications.


The introduction says “we focus on accomplishing three things: offering a wider and historically accurate portrait of the diversity of sociological theories and their application to organization studies.” They state that “we offer an analytical introduction to each section that situates readings within the range of theoretical paradigms. This is a collection of classic and contemporary studies of organizations by Blumer, Follett, Goffman, Hobbes, Rousseau and Weber. It is based on a theoretical framework that examines organizations with attention to structure and objectives, interactions among members and among organizations, the relationship between the organization and its environment and the social significance or social meaning of the organization. Emphasizes some of the changes and challenges facing organizations today: the integration of new media, the implementation of diversity and inclusion, and the promotion of sustainable workforce engagement.


Goffman, E. (1959). The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life. Garden City, NY: Doubleday.


            For many years, Goffman was one of the most original thinkers in social psychology and sociology. He had a genius for noticing the subtle ways in which human beings communicate their meanings to themselves and each other. Because his books were so unusual, each one was eagerly anticipated. His emphasis was on what is overt and observable...if one knows how to look. He authored many books on various forms of organizational behavior. He was particularly astute in documenting the ways in which organizational norms and values impact individual behavior.


Gouldner, A. (1954). Patterns of Industrial Bureaucracy. Glencoe, IL: Free Press.


            Another of the "bureaucratic sociologists" (see Blau, Merton, Selznick). In succeeding years, Gouldner has written a number of very important commentaries on sociology and its role in society.

Hall, C. and G. Lindzey (1957). Theories of Personality. New York, NY: Wiley.


            Every graduate student in the behavioral sciences in the 1950's and 1960's knew about "Hall and Lindzey." They were the bible on personality theory. The book consists of chapters intensively describing and critiquing all the major theories of personality of the day. A book that performs a similar function has just been published -  Morley Segal's Points of Influence.


Hall, E.T. (1959) The Silent Language. New York, NY: Doubleday.


            This book did as much to make "body language" real and respectable as any other single work. Hall is a psychoanalytically oriented anthropologist with a wide consulting practice in business and government. Still worth reading as an excellent introduction to non-verbal communication. Hall has written several other books in succeeding years that continue to explore the nature and significance of culture (see Hall, E.T., Beyond Culture. Garden City, NY: Doubleday Anchor Books, 1977.)


Hampden-Turner, C. (1981). Maps of the Mind. New York, NY: Macmillan.


            Author is a Harvard DBA in Organizational Behavior from the mid-1960's. This book is a survey of all the major personality theories that were being used by organizational researchers. The book has become very popular with "new age" thinkers because of its unusual scope and eclectic approach.


Handel, M. (2002). The Sociology of Organizations: Classic, Contemporary, and Critical Readings. Los Angeles, CA. Sage Publications.


Covers a range of theoretical perspectives and substantive topics through readings that are either classics in the field or are more modern studies. It begins with the basis of legitimacy and the three types of authority. The chapters explain key terms and concepts, provide illustrations, and summarize related debates and research. It provides the reader with an understanding of central concepts and an appreciation of the primary texts that are the foundation of the field. Useful in explaining terminology and concepts which are a key for the graduate student to understand the multi-disciplinary fields involved in organizational sociology. 


Harris, P.R. and R.T. Moran (1979). Managing Cultural Differences. Houston, TX: Gulf Publishing.


            This book is the first known textbook addressed to managers about the significance of cultural differences in organizations. It is written more for practitioners than academics, but it filled a tremendous need at the time and has sparked a number of other books with similar focus (see Adler).


Harvard Business Review Editors (1975). On Management. New York, NY: Harper & Row.


            All the Harvard Business Review classics on management. An outstanding sourcebook for the most influential articles of the 1950's and 1960's. Unfortunately, this book and the next are hard to find. They would be worth acquiring for anyone who wanted compact histories of management and human relations as expressed through the pages of the Harvard Business Review.



Harvard Business Review Editors (1979). On Human Relations. New York, NY:            Harper & Row.


            This collection practically defines the field of human behavior in organizations as it was conceived between about 1950 and 1970.


Harvey, J.B. (1988), The Abilene Paradox and Other Meditations on Management. San

            Francisco, CA: New Lexington Press.


            The original "Abilene Paradox" appeared in the journal, Organizational Dynamics, in 1974. Its central thesis is that human groupings often make decisions and take actions that are contrary to the wishes of their members and thereby perpetrate confusion and craziness on themselves and their stakeholders. More importantly the article explained why and how this phenomenon occurs.  Harvey has published many other essays, each marked by extraordinary creativity, insight, and humor. The Abilene Paradox is also available as a video.  In research done in the Organization Development group at Bowling Green University, this article of Harvey's was ranked first in usefulness by a panel of O.D. practitioners from a list of 180 books and articles in the field.  


Hayakawa, S.I. (1964) Language in Thought and Action (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Harcourt, Brace, & World.


            This is a popular introduction to the field of General Semantics - the study of how people form and communicate meanings. The idea of studying organizations as "fields of meaning" was very popular in the late 1950's and early 1960's. Hayakawa fell somewhat into disfavor as a result of his hawkish stance on Vietnam; he was also perceived to be somewhat controversial as President of San Francisco State. He later became a U.S. senator. His brother played the Japanese colonel in Bridge over the River Kwai. Unfortunately, these later colorful events in his career overshadowed his book. The idea of organization as a "field of meaning," however, has been making a comeback in the 1990's, due chiefly to the recent surge of interest in organizational culture. An impressive example is Wilfred Drath and Charles Palus's Making Common Sense: Leadership as Meaning-making Ian Community of Practice. Greensboro, NC: Center for Creative Leadership, 1994.


Head, T.C., Sorenson, P.F., et al (2007). Organization Behavior and Change: Managing Human Resources for Organizational Effectiveness (14th ed.). Champaign, IL. Stipes Publishing


Hennig, M. and A. Jardim (1977). The Managerial Woman. Garden City, NY:  Anchor



            This book appeared about a decade after the major feminist critiques of society and the passage of Affirmative Action legislation, and is the first major study and critique of the status of women in corporations. As such, the book launched a revolution of theory, research, and change. (see Kanter).


Herzberg, F. et al. (1957). Job Attitudes: Review of Research and Opinion. Pittsburgh, PA:

            Psychological Service of Pittsburgh.


            This bibliography is the background to Herzberg's famous job enrichment theory. The book surveys practically everything that was known about job design and human behavior at that time. I am indebted to Professor Erik K. Winslow, a student of Herzberg's, for the opportunity to examine a copy of this book.


___________ (1959). The Motivation to Work. New York, NY: Wiley.


              This book is Herzberg's basic presentation of his "motivator-hygiene" for work motivation.


___________ (1966). Work and the Nature of Man. Cleveland, OH: World Publishing Co.


Homans, G.C. (1950) The Human Group. New York, NY: Harcourt, Brace & Co.


            This is one of the most influential books on small group theory ever written. It "revisits" four or five classic empirical studies of group behavior, including the Hawthorne researches and Whyte's Street Corner Society (see below). Homans created a simple framework that distinguished formal and informal modes of behavior (which Homans called "external" and "internal" systems), and divided all behavior into three categories: "activities," "interactions," and "sentiments," thus giving a 6 celled typology. Homans is one of the best social science writers of the 20th Century, and also a close student of the nature of science. While the book was very influential, the 6 factor typology has not stood the test of time after Homans himself abandoned it.


___________ (1961). Social Behavior: Its Elementary Forms. New York: Harcourt, Brace, and World.


            Homans shocked his colleagues by abandoning the framework of The Human Group entirely and instead sought to reduce all social behavior to "reward and punishment" propositions from Skinnerian psychology (Skinner*) and classical "economic man theory." The book is not alone in that tradition nor is it without influence, but by and large this second book did not have the influence of the earlier volume.


Jaques, E. (1952), The Changing Culture of the Factory. New York, NY: Dryden Press.


_______________ (1961), Equitable Payment. Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois Univ. Press.


            Jaques' large body of more recent work is well-known and influential, but is more contemporary than this bibliography. His two earlier books were influential in their own right, the second for example being a key basis for a large-scale research project on blue collar job satisfaction conducted between 1962 and 1965 at the Harvard Business School.


Kanter, R.M. (1977). Men and Women of the Corporation. New York, NY: Basic             Books.


            With Hennig and Jardim, one of the first management books to explicitly address the situation of women in management and in organizations generally. The book was a best seller. Kanter moved from Yale to the Harvard Business School in the late 1980's to become the first woman to hold an endowed chair at the Harvard Business School. The Chair was endowed as the Class of 1960 Chair in Organizational Behavior.


Kaplan, A. (1961) The Conduct of Inquiry. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin.


            Kaplan was a philosopher who had a distinguished career at UCLA and later as an émigré in Israel. He was very familiar with the field of organizational behavior as it was developing in the late 1950's and early 1960's in Southern California. He annually served as an encounter group leader at a retreat sponsored by the UCLA Extension Division. This book is a basic statement of the philosophical dilemmas encountered by the social sciences in the process of rigorous inquiry. It was well-received and influential in its day but has unfortunately receded in influence over the past twenty-five years or so. Kaplan also authored New Worlds of Philosophy which is an excellent layperson's introduction to a dozen or so major schools of philosophical thought.


Katz, D. and R.L. Kahn (1966). The Social Psychology of Organization. New York, NY: Wiley.


            This was the first major exposition of systems theory for the social sciences. The authors were part of the "group dynamics" school (Cartwright and Zander*) at the Univ. of Michigan, and thus had high visibility and influence in the community of social psychology. Everybody was reading "Katz and Kahn" in the late 1960's. The book quickly led to a spate of management textbooks that claimed to embody a "systems approach." The book is worth re-reading today to see if, with hindsight, we can understand why it has taken so long for real systems thinking to take hold in the social sciences.


Katz, D. & Kahn, R. (1978). The Social Psychology of Organizations (2nd ed). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley and Sons.


Dated in terms of content, but still informative because it states that “The psychological approach to the study of problems in the social world has been impeded by an inability to deal with the facts of social structure and social organizations.” It goes on to say that there is “the implicit assumption that individuals exist in social vacuums.” The book provides insight into the essential problems of human organizations, the motivation to work, conflict resolution, leadership and the process of organizational change. (2) Examines the relations between organizations and their environments, the effect of organizational demands and opportunities on individual health, and the experimental development of organizational alternatives to conventional bureaucratic structure. (3) Applies theoretical principles to concrete organizational problems, illustrating with research findings.


Kepner, C.H. and B.B. Tregoe (1965). The Rational Manager. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.


                        "Kepner-Tregoe" has for many years been one of the best known of the management consulting firms which have an explicit grounding in the behavioral sciences. This book by the firm's two founders is a basic statement of their approach. It was widely read by practicing managers in  the 1960's. There are many such statements on the market today by various prominent consultants. They are not "academic," "scholarly" works, but they often prove to have greater impact than more deliberate and empirically rigorous statements.


Kleiner, A. (1996). The Age of Heretics: Heroes, Outlaws, and the Forerunners of Corporate

            Change. New York, NY: Doubleday.


              This is a popularly-written history of attempts since World War II to conduct planned change of human organizations. It covers the subject matter of OB&D, but also includes surveys of other related fields that OB&D scholars and professionals have not by and large utilized. Kleiner was a major contributor to Peter Senge's The Fifth Discipline and co-authored with Senge The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook (New York: Doubleday, 1994). The book is quite comprehensive, although it gives relatively less space and weight to the contributions of Roethlisberger*, Lawrence,* and their colleagues at the Harvard Business School.


Koontz, H. (1961). The Management Theory Jungle. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.


            Koontz was for many years the senior professor of management at UCLA's Graduate School of Management. With Cyril O'Donnell he authored Principles of Management which went through many editions. From the 1950's to 1970's this text was to management what "Samuelson" was to economics (viz., the core ideas of "planning, organizing, staffing, directing, controlling").  Koontz was known to be very skeptical about the behavioral sciences, particularly the normative forms that counseled managers to become more "people-oriented." However, in the "jungle" that Koontz sketched, he gave fairly even-handed treatment to various schools of thought about management. This book was probably his most creative work. For two decades, "discuss Koontz's management theory jungle" was a standard question on doctoral comprehensive examinations.

Lawrence, P.R. (1960). The Changing of Organizational Behavior Patterns. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Division of Research. 


            This was a well-received study of major, system-wide structural change in a large super market chain. Unlike most such studies, Lawrence's approach involved a detailed analysis of the changed interpersonal awareness and abilities that the structural change required in order to succeed. The book contained a creative approach to collecting data "on the fly" in the super markets by which it could be determined if the managers were learning the required new behaviors. (see Bass and Roethlisberger for the possible significance of the phrase "organizational behavior" in the title of Lawrence's book.)


Lawrence, P.R. and J. Lorsch (1967). Organization and Environment: Managing Differentiation

            and Integration. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Division of Research.


            This became one of the most influential of a new breed of management-oriented books in the mid to late 1960's. Attention shifted away from the "personalistic" emphasis that had been created by books like McGregor's Human Side of Enterprise, and toward more interest in structure and policy. In the 1960's, Katz and Kahn's Social Psychology of Organizing and James D. Thompson's Organizations in Action were other prominent members of this genre. Lawrence and Lorsch's book was also a major departure from the kind of book the organizational behavior group at Harvard had been producing, forcing a great number of colleagues at other institutions to revise their perceptions of what the Harvard group was all about. (see Ronken and Lawrence.)


Leavitt, H.J., L.R. Pondy, and D.M. Boje (1980). Readings in Managerial Psychology.

            Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.


              A very influential book of readings, still in print in later editions. Leavitt has been senior professor of organizational behavior at the Stanford Business School for many years. The late Lou Pondy was one of the most widely admired of the "second generation" of OB professors and was chairman of the management department at the University of Illinois for several years before his untimely death.


Lewin, K. (1951). Field Theory in Social Science: Selected Theoretical Papers. New York, NY: Harper.


            With Maslow and Mayo and perhaps one or two others, Lewin is one of the true giants in the history of the OB&D field. This book is the primary source of his own writings, although he worked with so many other major scholars in American social science that his influence has been multiplied many times over. His ideas were foundational to the Center for Group Dynamics at the University of Michigan, for example, and to the creation of the National Training Laboratories organization out of which grew the Organization Development field. There are excellent biographies and critical inter-pretations of Lewin's work available. (see Bradford).


Likert, R. (1961). New Patterns of Management. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.


                        One of the set of seminal books appearing in the early 1960's which defined the field of organizational behavior. Likert used the extensive empirical studies on supervision, group dynamics, and job satisfaction to synthesize his own approach to effective leadership of people in organizations. Likert was based at the University of Michigan for many years.


_________(1967). The Human Organization - Its Management and Value. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.


            This book was Likert's direct contribution to the evolving field of O.D. It contains a presentation of four systems of organizational types, of which so-called "System 4" represented Likert's vision of an organization climate that fully supported the best qualities in human beings.


Lippitt, G.L. (1982). Organizational Renewal: A Holistic Approach to Organization Development. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.


            Lippitt was the younger brother of Ron Lippitt, one of the founders of NTL. Lippitt the younger was a tireless writer, speaker, consultant, and professor on all aspects of the evolving field of O.D. from its inception in the early 1960's until his untimely death in the early 1990's. In the early 1960's, he founded the Behavioral Science doctoral program at George Washington University, where he spent virtually his entire career. He was a singular leader within the American Society for Training and Development regarding O.D. and was a major bridge between O.D. and such other fields as Human Resource Development and Adult Education.


            Lippitt had one of the longest publication lists of books and articles in the entire O.D. field. The "renewal" book was his major statement of what he thought human organizations needed to become, and of the processes that such change involved.


Lowry, R.J. (1979). The Journals of A.H. Maslow (2 vols). Monterey, CA: Brooks/Cole

            Publishing Co.


            It is not widely known that Maslow* kept a journal, and it is not widely known that the journals of the last eleven years of his life were published. These volumes are exactly the cornucopia of ideas and feelings that one would expect a journal of Maslow's to be.  A copy of this book is in the Keffer Library, University of St. Thomas, 1000 LaSalle Ave., Minneapolis, MN 55403.


Luft, J. (1969). Of Human Interaction. Palo Alto, CA: National Press Books.


            Luft, with Harry Ingham, was co-inventor of the interpersonal communications framework known as the JoHari Window (i.e., Joe and Harry). This device is probably second only to Maslow's* Need Hierarchy in its popularity with trainers and workshop leaders. (The daughter of one well-known O.D. consultant is named "Johari.") Unfortunately and somewhat puzzlingly, the framework has seen virtually no conceptual development since its creation.


Maier, N.R.F. (1965). Psychology in Industry. Boston, MA: Houghton-Mifflin.


            A well-known and well-regarded survey of theories and applications.


March, J.G. and H. A. Simon (1958). Organizations. New York, NY: John Wiley.


            Probably the most influential organization theory book of the postwar era. Highly rationalistic in its form, it creates a systematic framework of propositions from which deductions about actual events and operations can be drawn. The precursor of the structuralist movement that began a few years later (Lawrence and Lorsch*). March and Simon were at Carnegie-Mellon when they authored this book. Simon later won a Nobel Prize in Economics for his work in decision theory. He has also been a leading theorist in Artificial Intelligence. March went to UC Irvine and from there to the Stanford Business School.


Maslow, A.H. (1964). Motivation and Personality. New York, NY: Harper & Bros.


__________ (1959). New Knowledge in Human Values. New York, NY: Harper & Bros.


__________ (1965). Eupsychian Management: A Journal. Homewood, IL: R.D. Irwin.


__________ (1968). Toward a Psychology of Being. New York, NY: Van Nostrand.


__________ (1971). The Farther Reaches of Human Nature. New York, NY: Viking Press.


            A strong case can be made that the fields of Organizational Behavior and Organization Development could not exist without the vision of Maslow. For more than two decades he was by far the clearest and strongest and most intellectually grounded voice against the mechanistic, reductionist value system that was implicit in Skinnerian (see Skinner) psychology. The Need Hierarchy is what he is best known for, but that is because McGregor popularized it. The truth is that Maslow was a centrifuge of ideas about the nature of man and the nature of the process of studying man. He was not a management or leadership theorist, nor was he particularly interested in social systems per se. He was a theorist of the human spirit and as such he provided a value system and a vocabulary and an intellectual discipline for a whole generation of psychologists and humanists.


Matteson, M.T. (1989) and J.M. Ivancevich. Management and Organizational Behavior Classics. Homewood, IL: R.D. Irwin.


            A book similar to Boone and Bowen with some variation in "classics" included.


Mayo, E. (1947). Notes on the Psychology of Pierre Janet.  Boston, MA: Harvard University Press.



Mayo, E. (1933). The Human Problems of an Industrial Civilization. New York, NY: Viking Press.


_______ (1945). The Social Problems of an Industrial Civilization. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Division of Research.


            Mayo did not publish a great deal himself but, as the intellectual and spiritual father of the Harvard Business School group in Organizational Behavior, worked his influence on many others at Harvard and elsewhere. At Harvard, his chief disciple was Fritz J. Roethlisberger*, co-author of Management and the Worker, the report of the Hawthorne Studies which Mayo designed and led. Both the "Human Problems" and the "Social Problems" refer repeatedly to the learnings from the Hawthorne Studies.


McClelland, D. (1953). The Achievement Motive. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts.


______________ (1961). The Achieving Society. Princeton NJ: Van Nostrand.


            The late David McClelland pioneered work on achievement motivation, including the use of his colleague Henry Murray’s "Thematic Apperception Test" to measure motivation. He has studied entrepreneurs extensively. In early 1994, the Atlantic Monthly ran a long article assessing McClelland's work and influence.


McGregor, D. (1960). The Human Side of Enterprise. New York: McGraw-Hill.


            This book is arguably the most influential book of the last fifty years in terms of presenting the case for "the human side of enterprise." It is anecdotal and practical in its style. It presents the famous idea of Theory X and Theory Y, which are based on the motivation theories of A.H. Maslow*. However, the book does not test this concept rigorously nor propose a method for testing it. Over the years various tests have been created that try to measure the degree of a manager's adherence to Theory X vs. Y, but these have not had the influence the book did, nor have they enriched the original idea. It is worth remembering that at the time this book appeared, there were virtually no books on the market that were both well-grounded in research and theory and written in a readable style with lots of examples of applications. McGregor, in other words, almost single-handedly created the "business book" market.


Merton, R. K. (1957). Social Theory and Social Structure. Glencoe, IL: Free Press.


            This book is a key set of essays in the "bureaucratic sociology" tradition, following Talcott Parsons (see Blau, Gouldner, and Selznick).


Metcalf, H. and L.F. Urwick (1940). Dynamic Administration: The Collected Papers of Mary

            Parker Follett. New York, NY: Harper & Bros.


            Mary Parker Follett was a visionary management consultant and writer in the post World War I period. She is widely regarded as having had ideas about effective organizations and leadership that were at least one and maybe two or three generations ahead of their time.


Mills, C.W. (1960). Images of Man: The Classic Tradition in Sociological Thinking. New York,NY: George Braziller.


            This collection by the sociologist C. Wright Mills is an excellent introduction to many of the "grand theories" of late 19th and early 20th century sociology. (W.H. Whyte*, 1956.)


Morgan, G. (1986). Images of Organization. Beverly Hills: Sage Publications.


                        Morgan's book itself is not a foundational book to the field, but its many chapters on different ways of looking at organizations constitute a tour de force of ideas about organizations that have been developed in the past 50-75 years. It performs a service similar to that of Hampden-Turner* and Segal.* An “executive” edition of this book was published in 1998.


Morgan, G. (1997). Images of Organization (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.


Explores and develops the art of reading and understanding organizational life. It is based on the premise that all theories of organization and management are based on implicit images or metaphors that lead us to see, understand, and manage organizations in distinctive yet partial ways. The book helps the reader to engage in a mode of thinking that generates important insights while having major limitations.  Morgan book provides a comprehensive resource for exploring the complexity of modern organizations. This work is noted in the literature reviews as a leading-edge theory that is translated into leading-edge practice. Morgan shows managers how to view their organizations by using his renowned creative images and metaphors.



Nord, W. (1972). Concepts and Controversies in Organizational Behavior. Pacific Palisades,

            CA: Goodyear.


                        An excellent survey of the materials of its title. Widely used as a textbook in the 1970's. Nord is a co-editor of the presently popular texts, Organizational Reality and Managerial Reality.

Parsons, T. and E.A. Shils (1951). Toward a General Theory of  Action. New York, NY: Harper & Row.


            A powerful theoretical formulation by one of the most important sociologists of the 20th century.  Professor David Schwandt of George Washington University uses Parsons’ theories to ground ideas about organizational learning.


Parsons, T. (1965). Theories of Society: Foundations of Modern  Sociological Theory. New York, NY: Free Press (2 vols.).


                              Very large collection of classic papers from the 19th and early 20th century.


Parsons, T.  On Building Social System Theory: A Personal History. Daedalus. Fall,

            1970, pp. 826-881.

            A very nice memoir of the intellectual climate in Cambridge, MA during the 1930's. Many famous names amble through these pages.

Perrow, C. (1986). Complex Organizations: A Critical Essay (3rd ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, Inc.

Provides a succinct overview of the principal schools of thought as it presents a critical, socio-psychological, and historical orientation to the field of organizational analysis. Written, with theories made concrete by specific, student-oriented examples, it takes a critical view toward organizations, analyzing their impact on individuals, groups, and society as a whole. The chapters on economic theories of organization and the conditional power theory are among the features of the revised edition.

Pigors, P.J.W. and F. C. Pigors (1961). Case Method in Human Relations: The Incident Process.

            New York: McGraw-Hill.


            Pigors' "incident process" was an early and widely-admired method of creating "experiential learning" in the classroom. It is similar to the case method, but puts the student in a much more active, inquiring mode. The instructor describes an "incident" as a tip of an iceberg. The class then interrogates the instructor for more information about the situation. The method trains students as inquirers and in reasoning and drawing inferences about human situations.


Roethlisberger, F. J. and W.J. Dixon (1939). Management and the Worker. Boston, MA: Harvard

            University Press.


            This is the report of the famous Hawthorne Studies. One of its last chapters, "The Industrial Organization as a Social System" served as the basic framework guiding the Organizational Behavior faculty at Harvard for the next twenty five years. Twenty years after Management and the Worker was published, Roethlisberger proposed in a memo to his faculty colleagues that the issues and subject matter and methodologies he had been concerned with throughout his career be summarized in the phrase, "Organizational Behavior." His memo may be the first use of that phrase (however, see Bass).


            The Hawthorne Research was controversial for a variety of reasons. They were challenged both on grounds of their disturbance of the existing industrial order, and on grounds of their adequacy as social science research. See Landsberger, H. A. Hawthorne Revisited: Management and the Worker, Its Critics, and Developments in Human Relations in Industry. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University,  1958; and Gillespie, R. Manufacturing Knowledge: A History of the Hawthorne Experiments.  Cambridge, England: The Press Syndicate of the University of Cambridge, 1991.


Roethlisberger, F.J. (1941). Management and Morale. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University  Press.


            Speeches by Roethlisberger about the meaning of Hawthorne, and other subjects, chiefly to managers in the 1930's.


________________ (1954). Training for Human Relations: An Interim Report of a Program

for Advanced Training and Research in Human Relations. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Division of Research.


            This book is a research report of a three year project funded by the Ford Foundation to develop what the book calls "second-level practitioners." These are individuals who are skillful practitioners of human relations principles in teaching, consulting and management, who also possess well-developed skills in theory and research and who ALSO possess high degrees of mental health and self-awareness. The project, in other words, was Roethlisberger's attempt to conceive of and then implement a program that would produce his ideal, fully-rounded OB&D professional/human being. Many feel this book is the best single statement of Roethlisberger's philosophy of science and practice. This book is unfortunately out of print, and no final report was ever written. Xerox copies of various chapters can still be found, and occasionally a complete copy of the book. The author of this Bibliography has a copy.


___________________(1968). Man-in-Organization: Essays of F.J. Roethlisberger. Cambridge,

            MA: Harvard Univ. Press.


            This is a series of speeches Roethlisberger gave over about twenty years. A number of his most important later formulations are included, such as "The Contributions of the Behavioral Sciences to a General Theory of Management," given at UCLA in 1961 (reprinted in Koontz*) and summarizing the entire Harvard approach to OB&D. The phrase "man-in-organization" summed up, for Roethlisberger, what he thought the OB&D field was basically about - with "man" understood of course to be a non-gender-specific term.


_____________________ (1977). The Elusive Phenomena: An Autobiographical Account of My

            Work in the Field of Organizational Behavior at the Harvard Business School.

            Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Division of Research.


            The bulk of Roethlisberger's career occurred before the OB&D field began to gel into an academic body of knowledge and professional practice. Indeed, the reason Roethlisberger gave his autobiography the title that he did was that he would unapologetically say that he had spent his entire career trying to give a satisfactory statement of what the "phenomena" of OB&D basically are. Needless to say, in his own efforts to say what the field was about, he exercised important leadership in helping the field arise.


Rogers, C. (1942). Counseling and Psychotherapy. New York, NY: Houghton Mifflin.


            This book is a classic in counseling as well as being very influential in the history of OB&D. Rogers' ideas became important to the evolving field of OB&D because he so thoroughly explored the process of talking sensitively and supportively to another person. A central concern of the new field was to help managers talk more effectively with employees, deal with feelings, be more open, etc. This book of Rogers, and even more so his 1961 compendium provided ideas and methods for these conversations (See also on this list, Athos and Gabarro; and Turner and Lombard.) A doctoral dissertation has recently been completed at George Washington University exploring the relationships between acting toward people according to Rogers' ideas, and subordinates' perceptions of a leader's effectiveness (see Robert Kramer, "Leading by Listening: An Empirical Test of Carl Rogers's Theory of Human Relationship Using Interpersonal Assessments of Leaders by Followers," unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, School of Business & Public Management, George Washington University, 1997).


Rogers, C. (1961). On Becoming a Person. Boston, MA: Houghton-Mifflin.


            A compendium of previous articles and speeches by Rogers. Probably the best single source for understanding his thinking. Contains all of his classic articles.


Ronken, H.O. and Lawrence, P.R. (1952). Administering Changes. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Division of Research.


            This book is an interpreted case study. It is one of the best examples of the interweaving of empirical field research in an organization with theory-based interpretations of what is found there. The theory-base is an interesting adaptation of some of the personality and communication theories of Carl Rogers. Ronken left academe after this book but Lawrence remained at Harvard for the next forty years and had a distinguished career marked by many more influential books as well as honors from his colleagues at Harvard and around the world. Several doctoral advisees of Lawrence's are presently substantial contributors to the OB&D field. (see Lawrence)


Rothwell, W.J., Sullivan, R., McLean, G.N. (1995). Practicing Organization Development. San Diego, CA. Pfeiffer & Company.


Rubenstein, A. and C. Haberstroh (1960). Some Theories of Organization. Homewood, IL: Dorsey Press.


            An influential book of readings on organization theory. Rubenstein is also one of the founders of the field known as Research and Development Management, or more recently, Management of Science and Technology.


Schein, E. (1969). Process Consultation: Its Role in Organization Development. Reading,

             MA: Addison-Wesley.


            This book was in the original Addison-Wesley (see above) series. It has gone into a second and perhaps a third edition and can stand by itself, independent of the field of OD, as an important statement about the process of exerting influence and being helpful from a consulting as opposed to a hierarchical position.


Scott, W. R. (2014). Institutions and Organizations: Ideas, Interests, and Identities (4th ed.). Los Angeles, CA: Stanford Press.


Offers an exploration of the relationship between institutional theory and the study of organizations. Discusses the institutional thought, viewed as historically and as a contemporary, ongoing field of study on the insights of cultural and organizational sociologists, institutional economists, social and cognitive psychologists, political scientists, and management theorists. It reviews and integrates the most important recent developments in this rapidly evolving field and strengthens and elaborates the author’s framework which supports research and theory construction. It presents a cohesive view of institutionalism. It also evaluates and clarifies developments in theory and research while it identifies future research directions.

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Scott, W. R. (1992). Organizations: Rational, Natural and Open Systems (3rd ed.). Los Angeles, CA: Stanford Press.


This is a balanced introduction to organizational studies. It enables the reader to compare and contrast different approaches to the study of organizations. This book is a valuable tool for the reader, as we are all intertwined with organizations in one form or another. Numerous other disciplines besides sociology are addressed in this book, including economics, political science, strategy and management theory. Topic areas discussed in this book are the importance of organizations; defining organizations; organizations as rational, natural, and open systems; environments, strategies, and structures of organizations; and organizations and society. This book is helpful for those employed in fields where knowledge of organizational theory is necessary, including sociology, anthropology, psychology, corporate management.



Segal, M. (1997). Points of Influence. San Francisco, CA: Jossey Bass.


            Somewhat like Hall and Lindzey, Segal interprets the significance of all the most influential psychological theories, but with the significant additional feature of suggesting what kinds of organizational change and development each theory might be appropriate to.  Most of the theories Segal discusses were exerting independent influence from the earliest years of the Organizational Behavior and Development field.


Selznick, P. (1949). TVA and the Grass Roots: A Study in the Sociology of Formal Organization.

            Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.


___________ (1957).  Leadership in Administration: A Sociological Interpretation. New York, NY: Harper & Row.


            Selznick is another of the "bureaucratic sociologists" (see Blau, Gouldner, and Merton). His leadership book is still one of the best descriptions of the role, responsibilities, and opportunities of the top level executive. He has been more influential in the public administration world than in business, but he can be read with profit by scholars in any sector.


Shepherd, C.R. (1964). Small Groups; Some Sociological Perspectives. San Francisco, CA: Chandler Publishing Co.


            Shepherd's book reviewed and critiqued three major schools of thought in small group theory: George Homans, Kurt Lewin, and R. Freed Bales; the book discusses six other theories more briefly. It was regarded as a very valuable survey and critique at a time when "the small group" was the most important element in the field of OB&D.


Simon, H. (1965). Administrative Behavior. New York, NY: Free Press.


            This book is regarded as a landmark in management and organization theory, on par in influence with such other writers as Parsons*, Barnard*, Drucker*, or Roethlisberger*. Simon later won a Nobel Prize for his work in artificial intelligence and decision theory.


Singleton, R.A., & Straits, B.C. (2010). Approaches to Social Research (5th ed.). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.


This is an introduction to research methods and covers most of the fundamentals in a straightforward, student-friendly manner, it is ideal for undergraduate- and graduate-level courses across the social sciences and also serves as an indispensable guide for researchers. There is a balance between specific techniques and the underlying logic of scientific inquiry. The book describes the four major approaches to research: experimentation, survey research, field research, and the use of available data. It develops examples of empirical research and an emphasis on the research process enable students to better understand the real world application of research methods.


Skinner, B.F. (1974). About Behaviorism. New York, NY: Vintage Books.


            This is a layperson's book in which Skinner tries to answer the many criticisms of his theories that there have been. It is an excellent introduction to Behaviorism and is a set of arguments that, uncomfortable as they may be, need to be understood by Organizational Behavior scholars. In this book Skinner even anticipates the objection that his theory does not account for his own behavior as a theorist and author and refutes it to his satisfaction (despite the absence of a concept of "feeling satisfied" in his theory). Another of Skinner's books that challenged the foundations of OB&D among other social science disciplines was Beyond Freedom and Dignity.


Snyder, W.U. (1947). Casebook of Non-directive Counseling. Boston: Houghton-Mifflin.


            An influential contribution to the ideas being developed by Carl Rogers.


Swanson, G., T. Newcomb, and E. Hartley (1952). Readings in Social  Psychology. New York, NY: Henry Holt.


            Widely assigned in social psychology courses of the 1950's containing many of the basic papers of the time.

Tannenbaum, R. A., and W. G. Schmidt. How to Choose a Leadership Pattern,

            Harvard Business Review,  May-June, 1973; reprinted in Boone and Bowen.


            This article originally appeared in the Harvard Business Review in 1958. It was such a frequently requested reprint that the HBR republished it as a "classic" in May-June, 1973. This is the original statement of what came in the 1960's to be called "situational leadership" or "contingency theory of leadership." The authors posit that the most effective leadership style in a given case will derive from the interaction of forces in the situation, forces in the leader, and forces in the grouping toward which the leadership is directed. Out of this three-way interaction, the leader would find that one of the following styles was the most effective: "Tell, Sell, Consult, Delegate, or Join." (Fiedler*)


Tannenbaum, R. et al (1961).  Leadership and Organization: A Behavioral Science Approach.

            New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.


            This book contains the "West Coast" approach to Organization Development. The "sensitivity training group" was the center-piece concept, although in general the book is filled with various approaches to leadership viewed as an intimately interpersonal process. The UCLA group around Tannenbaum did mainly clinical research on OB&D, particularly within the group context.  It was most famous, however, for its experiments in experiential education and in applications of  Humanistic Psychology to OB&D.


Tannenbaum, R., and S. A. Davis, Values, Man, and Organizations, Industrial Management Review, Vol. 10, No. 2 (Winter, 1969). [This journal has since become the Sloan Management Review, and is still published by the M.I.T. Sloan School of  Management.]


            This article is one of the most complete descriptions of O.D.'s basic values that was ever produced in the early years. It was highly influential at the time, particularly among the Humanistic Psychology wing of O.D. ( Maslow,* Rogers.*)  The article is reprinted in Organizational Frontiers and Human Values, edited by Warren G. Schmidt (Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1970). That book was a record of a conference convened by Tannenbaum and Schmidt at UCLA in the spring of 1970 (a period of great unrest and violence over Vietnam and Civil Rights). The conference was attended by such well-known O.D. thinkers, as Warren Bennis, Warner Burke, Eric Trist, Donald Schon, Leland P. Bradford, and Robert Chin. It was one of Abraham Maslow's last public appearances.


            Tannenbaum's co-author, the late Shel Davis, was a leading OD practitioner in industry, one of the founder's of the OD Network, and recipient of numerous awards for his pioneering innovations at TRW and Digital Equipment Corp.


Tannenbaum, Bob, with David Russell. Bob Tannenbaum: An Unfolding Life - Integrating

            the Personal and Professional.  Santa Barbara, CA: UC Santa Barbara Oral History

            Project in Humanistic Psychology, paperback, 380 pp., no date.


            This book is a biography and autobiography of one of the major founders of the OB&D field. By extension, it is a history of the UCLA Group from the 1950's through the 1970's.  Among its many virtues, the book is a wonderful history of the nature and meaning of "sensitivity training," the personal and group learning approach that anchored the O.D. field in its first two decades. The book also contains an extensive chapter on O.D. consulting, including descriptions of specific projects,  as the author practiced it and taught many others to practice it in the 1960's and 1970's.


            The collaborating author says in his Preface, "The tapes, transcripts, and original manuscript of [this book] as well as Professor Tannenbaum's personal papers and other memorabilia relating to his teaching career at UCLA are in the Humanistic Psychology Archive in the Davidson Library's Department of Special Collections [at UC Santa Barbara]."


Thompson, J. D. (1966). Organizations in Action. New York, NY: Wiley.


            This was a very well-received contribution to organization theory. Thompson was a sociologist who had ties to James March* and Herbert Simon* at Carnegie Mellon. Thompson's book portrays an organization as an "acting thing." Thompson's was one of the first organization theory books to emphatically stress the role of the external environment in an organization's decisions and operations.


Trist, E., F. Emery, and H. Murray (1997)., The Social Engagement of Social Science: A

            Tavistock Anthology. Volume III [3] The Socio-Ecological Perspective. Philadelphia, PA:  University of Pennsylvania Press.


            This book brings together a variety of papers published within the “socio-technical systems” paradigm by various researchers and theorists associated with the Tavistock Institute of Human Relations in London. The approach became rapidly world famous after a landmark series of change projects in British coal mines in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s, and in weaving mills in Ahmadabad, India. Adherents of the socio-technical approach were always careful to distinguish it from OD, yet there was considerable affinity of spirit and collegial respect between the two schools of thought.


Turner, A. and P.R. Lawrence (1965). Industrial Jobs and the Worker: An Investigation of Response to Task Attributes. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Division of Research.


                        This book is a survey of the relation of blue collar job structure to job attitudes among 450 workers in ten different industries. It was not enthusiastically greeted at the time of its publication, but ten to fifteen years later, when the Quality of Work Life movement was in full swing, this book was a valuable source. This book also completed Lawrence's "job design period." He next turned to problems of organization structure and design (see Lawrence & Lorsch, above) where he made several landmark contributions. Turner and Lawrence also provided the broader context for a doctoral dissertation written on the same population of workers called, "Attitudes, Behavior, and Technical Structure: An Investigation of the Relation of Job Design to Emergent Human Behavior in Five Industrial Settings," by Peter Vaill, Harvard Business School, (1964). (see Ronken & Lawrence)


Turner, A. and G.F.F. Lombard (1969). Interpersonal Behavior and Administration. New York, NY: Free Press.


            This book was the first of two books (Athos & Gabarro*) summarizing the Harvard Business School's second year MBA course on listening skills. The course was an application of Carl Rogers' ideas about empathic listening.


Vaill, P.B. and K.L. Murrell (1975).  Organization Development: Sources and Applications.

            Washington DC: American Society for Training and Development


            This is a partially annotated 500 item bibliography of the OB&D field as it was understood at the time of publication. Portions of this bibliography have been reprinted in Varney and Loeffler.


Vaill, P.B. Integrating the Diverse Directions of the Behavioral Sciences. A chapter in Tannenbaum, R., N. Margulies, and F. Massarik, Human Systems Development. San Francisco: Jossey Bass, 1987.


            The book is a collection of twenty-three chapters by well-known authors in the OB&D field, all of whom were associated as faculty or students with the "Tannenbaum group" at UCLA between the late 1960's and the late 1980's. Vaill's article undertakes a reinterpretation of what the OB&D field was "up to," by examining three cornerstones of the field:  Douglas McGregor's* Theory X &Y, NTL's "sensitivity training" (Bradford*), and Carl Rogers'* "active listening." Vaill argued that despite the enormous popularity of all three techniques, insufficient attention had been given to what might be called the "cognitive status" of the three approaches. In brief,  the OB&D field viewed the three approaches as evidence of the scientific nature of the field, whereas Vaill argues that the three are not science as normally understood at all; and that viewing the field as scientific  in the normal sense leads to misunderstanding, confusion, and misdirected effort.


Van Eynde, D.F., Hoy, J.C., Van Enyde, D.C.  (1997). Organization Development Classics. San Francisco, CA. Jossey-Bass Publishers.


Varney, G., and M. Loeffler (1998). Bibliography of Organization Development and Change

            Bowling Green, OH: Department of Management, Bowling Green State University.     


              An expansion and update of Vaill and Murrell. Best currently available general bibliography of the field. Contains among other things, several citations of other bibliographies in the OB&D field.


Vickers, Sir Geoffrey (1965). The Art of Judgment. New York, NY: Basic Books.


______________ (1968). Value Systems and Social Process. New York, NY: Basic Books.


______________ (1973). Making Institutions Work. New York, NY: Wiley.


_______________ (1972). Freedom in a Rocking Boat: Changing Values in an Unstable Society. Pelican Books.


           Vickers was a British executive for his entire career. Relatively late in life he began to publish conceptual essays on his experiences leading large organizations, and produced in the process some of the most important work on organizational management, governance, and leadership of the past fifty years. His most important contribution was a model he called "the Appreciative System" (1965), a mode of executive behavior made up of three kinds of judgment: "reality judgment," by which we determine what is the case; "value judgment," by which we determine what we want to be the case; and "instrumental judgment," by which we figure out how to change what is into what might be. Prof. Bayard Catron of the George Washington University Dept. of Public Administration was a close personal friend of Vickers and is probably the world's foremost authority on his work.


            Vickers, and Emery and Trist* were close colleagues in the 1960's and 1970's. Echoes of each other's work occur repeatedly in their writings.


Walker, C. R.  and R. Guest (1952). The Man on the Assembly Line. Cambridge, MA: Harvard          

            University Press.


            One of the first books about the abysmal levels of motivation and the corrosive organizational climates of the Big Three automakers. It is not a polemic, though, but a serious research study which General Motors paid for. Walker later became one of the foremost "philosophers of technology" during a long career at Yale. He was an early commentator on the social impact of automation.


Walker, C.R. (1962). Modern Technology and Civilization. New York, NY:  McGraw-Hill.


              An excellent book of readings. Indispensable for anyone interested in research on the meaning of work between about 1940 and 1960.


Weick, K. (1969). The Social Psychology of Organizing. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.


            Weick has made many fundamental contributions to the OB field in the past

            four decades. This book virtually set thought about organizational behavior                  

            on a new path, for it viewed the organization in more dynamic terms in

            relation to the world around it than organization theory previously had.     

            “The organizing model” was of a dynamic process not a static thing ("the

            organization”). This model was something one had to understand to be at  

            all literate in the field. One could argue that this book made possible the   

            ideas about “learning organizations” which became so popular in the 1990’s.


Weisbord, M. (1987). Productive Workplaces. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.


            Weisbord has been a major voice in the theory and practice of O.D. consulting since the early 1970's. This particular book is a wonderful history and reinterpretation of many of the events, schools of thought, and controversies that have punctuated the O.D. field from its beginnings. Weisbord actually traces the roots of our concern for "productive workplaces" back to the late 19th century in the work of Frederick Winslow Taylor, and in the process debunks a lot of the stereotypes that have grown up around Taylor and other early contributors. The book ends with a sketch of what has since become Weisbord's major preoccupation - the philosophy and methodology of what he has named "Future Search."


________________ (1978). Organizational Diagnosis: A Workbook of Theory and Practice.

            Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.


            This book introduces Weisbord's well-known "Six Box Model" which was a comprehensive framework  for understanding what is going on in an organization, and which therefore provides a framework for designing and implementing change.


Wharton, A.S. (2007).The Sociology of Organizations: An Anthology of Contemporary Theory and Research. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.


This anthology provides the reader an overview of theory and research in organizational sociology. For my purposes, it was a starting point for readings in order to map out topical areas of interest academically in terms of doctorate work. The readings reflect the many disciplines and breadth of the organizational sociology field. It is good reading for instructors and students seeking a sociological understanding of organizations. There is attention to contemporary theory and research. It is a good anthology in terms of paying attention to contemporary theory and research on organizations. The readings demonstrate how organizational sociology contributes to our understanding of key social and economic issues. The book’s back jacket notes it is comprehensive, research-based and methodological.



Whyte, W. F. (1955) Street Corner Society. Chicago, IL: University of  Chicago Press.


            One of the first and best ethnographic studies of a small group in its natural setting. Whyte pioneered the "participant-observer" method of field research in this study done prior to World War II. Whyte was at Cornell University for many years and made many noteworthy contributions to the Organizational Behavior Field, including Human Relations in the Restaurant Industry and Action Research for Management.


Whyte, W.H., Jr. (1956). The Organization Man. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster.


            This book was a bestseller in the 1950's and probably did more than any other single book to focus attention on the "organizational society" that America had become. In those years the "organization man" became a code phrase for the conformist middle manager who primarily wants to survive in the power structure by doing exactly what his boss wants, all the while telling himself that he is an independent-minded, entrepreneurial individualist who does not kow-tow to anybody. Other books in this genre were David Reisman's,  The Lonely Crowd; Robert Presthus's  The Organizational Society; C. Wright Mills'  White Collar, and  The Power Elite; and  The Hidden Persuaders as the first of a whole series of polemics about (and against) business organizations by Vance Packard; novels in a similar vein included The Man in the Grey Flannel Suit,  Executive Suite,  Point of No Return,  How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying, and  Cash McCall. Significantly, there is virtually no hint in any of these books that women might be qualified for and interested in positions as organizational managers (Henning and Jardim, and Kanter). The "Dilbert" comic strips of the 1990's continue the popular attack on sick organizational climates that destroy the human spirit while purporting to offer opportunities for growth and development.


            It is also worth noting that these books express the somewhat bitter and cynical attitude people had about organizations right in the period when Argyris, McGregor, Bennis, Roethlisberger ,and other founders of the OB&D field were beginning to develop a vision of another way for organizational life to be.


Zaleznik, A. (1989) The Managerial Mystique: Restoring Leadership in Business. New York, NY: Harper and Row.


            From the early 1950's onward, Zaleznik was one of the most creative members of the Harvard Business School Organizational Behavior group. In the early 1960's, Zaleznik broke with the group's primary tradition and began to explore psychoanalytic approaches to the understanding and improvement of organizational life. Over the years he authored many influential articles expressing this new approach (cf., the Harvard Business Review) and advised several doctoral students who have become very influential in their own right. This particular book is a recent summary of the author's thinking about organizational leadership. Zaleznik has been sharply critical of "mainstream" O.D. partly because, in his opinion, it has not come to terms with the realities of power.


Zuboff, S. (1988). In the Age of the Smart Machine: the Future of Work and Power. New York, NY. Basic Books.


            This book is not "historical" in publication date, but it does contain an extensive section on the history of work - what it has meant psychologically and sociologically - in preparation for describing the impact of "expert [computerized] systems" on organizational operations and life. This book is also valuable for its extensive appendix on interview and observation methods in organizational research.

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