On temporary organizations: A review, synthesis and research agenda

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Marijn Meijering

Authors: C. M. Burke, M. J. Morley

Publication Year: 2016

Source: https://doi.org/10.1177/0018726715610809

Journal: Human Relations

Volume: 69

Issue: 6

Categories: Adaptive Organization, New forms of Organization


Despite the ascendency of temporary organizations to common practice in many industries, and their expansion as an area of academic inquiry, research evidence on their genesis, development and impact remains fragmented across diverse fields, many of which fail to engage with each other. Our purpose in this article is to bring greater systematics to the scholarship on temporary organizations through documenting their evolution and assembling their bricolage. To this end, we first define and delineate the concept of the temporary organization and we develop an inductively derived framework for organizing the literature comprising individual/team attributes and interior processes, task attributes, tensions between the temporary organization and the permanent organization, networks and organizational fields and performance/outcomes of temporary organizations. Following an explication of these attributes and the dominant relationships between them, we suggest how this nascent area of inquiry might advance through the identification of a number of significant research opportunities. Finally, we highlight the consequences for broader management and organization theory development.


Marijn Meijering