Three essays on organization design competence

Lee, Eucman (2015) Three essays on organization design competence. Doctoral thesis, University of London: London Business School.


This research deals with the nature of design competence and its impact on organizational structure and performance. In particular, the focus is on identifying the intervening mechanisms linking the individual managers' design capabilities, the design choices they make and the performance consequences. Previously, the micro-mechanisms of organization design have been largely speculated about rather than known with confidence in both theoretical and empirical domains. This thesis is an attempt to fill the existing gap in current organization design research. In order to address the broad research question, I devised three research projects which are distinct but complementary to each other. In my first essay, I have demonstrated the systematic correlations between CEOs' functional experience attributes and the choices they make for their internal reporting structure, and how those choices in turn impact organizational performance. I used a large panel data of sizable district and general hospitals in UK National Health Service, which includes both CEO turnovers and detail organigrams. In my second essay, I have conducted an expert-novice comparison to investigate the question regarding how experienced managers differ from novices in translating firm's strategy into specific organizational arrangements. Drawing on prior theory of human problem solving and expert and novice studies, I have demonstrated the existence of design expertise and its substances. Finally, in my third essay, I suggested a theoretical model to explain why the emphasis on organization design competence and strategy implementation - designing organizations in order to achieve desired strategic objectives - is so important even in a world in which these strategic objectives may not be the correct ones. By fully articulating the intervening mechanisms linking designer's competence, organizational structure and performances, these three essays will contribute to theorizing organization design as a problem solving activity conducted by bounded rational individuals and will serve the pedagogy of corporate strategy.

More Details

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subject Areas: Organisational Behaviour
Date Deposited: 10 Feb 2022 16:13
Date of first compliant deposit: 10 Feb 2022
Subjects: Organisational behaviour
Management organisation structure
Corporate strategy
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2022 19:18

Export and Share


Published Version - Text
  • Restricted to Repository staff only
  • Request a copy


View details on Dimensions' website

Downloads from LBS Research Online

View details

Actions (login required)

Edit Item Edit Item