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date: 10 July 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The first part of this article traces the rise and fall of rationality as a category in organizational decision-making research. The essential story here is one in which the ongoing work of rationalist decision analysts and the growing critique of organization theorists have developed largely in isolation from each other. This occurred not only because their basic premises differed so radically but also because of the sharp distinction drawn between normative and descriptive research on organizational decision making. The second part suggests reconstructing the missing bridge between (rationalist) decision analysis and (organizational) decision-making research and describes how managers enact decision making as a social practice informed by a rational approach to decisions. Finally, the conclusion discusses the implications of this alternative account for both future research and practice.

Keywords: social construction, rationality, organizational decision making, normative research, social practice, rational approach

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