`From executive greed to criminal negligence, Dirty Business offers a masterful account of the great business debacles and disasters of modern times. A must read for all who want to understand - and prevent - corporate misconduct' - Michael Useem, University of Pennsylvania
Drawing on both theory and major case studies, this book provides a much-needed sociological and comparative analysis of the world of the manager in the context of misconduct within business organizations.
Organizational misbehaviour and crime have been relatively neglected in the social sciences, particularly in business studies. Analyses have tended to be fragmentary, overly slanted towards narrow external views - such as those of legal control and public policy - and predominantly North American. Dirty Business rectifies this by offering a broad sociological perspective related to work, organizations and management, supported by a range of key international case studies. In developing his arguments, Maurice Punch draws on primary and secondary sources as well as his extensive personal experience of teaching and interacting with managers and in developing courses on crisis and disaster management.
Part One critically examines the existing literature and dominant perspectives on organizational misbehaviour and crime. Punch challenges the view that businessmen break the law 'for the good of the company', highlighting a number of recent incidents in which executives have been discovered looting their own corporations. Part Two presents ten major cases which illustrate and amplify the arguments in the book. The cases are designed and presented in a form suitable for classroom teaching. Part Three offers a new organizational behaviour perspective that scrutinizes the irrational, even pathological, features of the managerial world, and the ways in which these distort decision-making.
As a broad conceptual analysis of business deviance - its causes, effects and possible solutions - combined with a rich collection of case examples, Dirty Business will be an invaluable resource for practitioners, students and academics in management, organization studies, sociology and criminology.
About the Author
Maurice Punch, previously Professor of Sociology at Nijenrode, The Netherlands School of Business, is now an independent scholar and consultant. He has published extensively in the area of business ethics and organizational crime.