Anthropology | Culture in Corporations;Corporations in Cultures
A600 | 16559 | Peebles

Over the last three decades the notion of “Corporate Culture” has been
advanced by business writers and management thinkers who knew little
anthropology; at the same time corporations tried to understand the
role of national and regional cultures in their global expansion and
they did so with little or no understanding of the contributions
anthropology might make to their transnational aspirations. In far too
many cases the corporation, their employees, and various countries
were served poorly by amateur anthropologists and self-proclaimed
ethnographers.  This course will explore 1) historical and
contemporary anthropological approaches to the concept of culture; 2)
exemplary writings on the role of culture in corporations; 3) the
ethnography of contemporary businesses; and 4) the role of various
cultures in the operation of transnational corporations.
The goal of the course is to gain some understanding of just what the
concept of culture and the practice of anthropology can bring to the
leadership and management of businesses throughout the world. It also
explores what anthropology can bring to the understanding of those who
are a part of and are affected by corporations of all sizes and types,
from small family enterprises to giant transnational enterprises.
The readings have been selected for their breadth of thought and place
and for a coherence of focus on the high-technology industry (with one
notable exception, the study of McDonalds in Asia).  In addition to
several monographs on the ethnography of the high-tech industries,
articles will be assigned from week-to-week and electronic copies of
these articles will be available though Oncourse.