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  • Print publication year: 2019
  • Online publication date: July 2019

Chapter 14 - A Sensemaking Perspective on Open Strategy

from Part IV - Theoretical Perspectives


Open Strategy, both as a set of processes and practices, and as an emerging academic field, “promises increased transparency and inclusion regarding strategic issues, engaging both internal and external stakeholders” (Hautz et al., 2017: 298; see also Whittington et al., 2011). Open contexts, by involving greater transparency and inclusiveness, strongly impact the way multiple stakeholders make sense of strategy or, in other words, negotiate, disseminate, or even contest the issues at play in strategic change. The diversity that openness brings to the strategic table – a diversity of people (inclusion) but also of information and of perspectives (transparency) – offers organizations more possibilities to help them to make sense of their complex environment (Seidl & Werle, 2018). To uphold the dual promise of inclusion and transparency, Open Strategy would therefore benefit from sensemaking research’s attention to the detailed practices through which people form a shared understanding.