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Appears in Collections:Management, Work and Organisation Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Storytelling and the scenario process: Understanding success and failure
Author(s): Bowman, Gary
MacKay, R Bradley
Masrani, Swapnesh
McKiernan, Peter
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Keywords: Scenario method
Scenario planning
Strategic management
Issue Date: May-2013
Citation: Bowman G, MacKay RB, Masrani S & McKiernan P (2013) Storytelling and the scenario process: Understanding success and failure, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 80 (4), pp. 735-748.
Abstract: Scenario planning has become a widely used strategic management approach for understanding future environmental uncertainty. Despite its increasing popularity in management practice, the theoretical underpinnings for scenario planning processes remain underdeveloped. Furthermore, there is little analysis on why some scenario methods succeed and others fail. To address this gap, we draw on storytelling theory as a conceptual lens for analyzing our data. This paper uses a longitudinal case study of two successive scenario planning interventions over a nine-year period in an intra-organizational partnership to investigate the efficacy of scenario planning development processes. Of the two interventions, the first, which followed what we term an 'inductive' method, was successful, meeting the objectives set by the organization, while the second approach, which we term 'deductive', was deemed a failure.We develop a process model explaining these divergent outcomes based on how meaning was either enabled or inhibited in the two methods through storytelling.
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