Edited by Markus C. Becker
Chapter 10: Routines and Routinization: An Exploration of Some Micro-Cognitive Foundations
Nathalie Lazaric Introduction The aim of this chapter is to explore the cognitive micro foundations of routines in order to understand the drivers and the triggers of the routinization process. The evolution of routines and their transformation at the individual and collective levels is questioned here with an explicit detour within the cognitive debate for having an accurate vision of concepts such as memorization or cognitive mechanisms. These notions are not neutral in explaining the evolution and stability of routines. I shall try to provide a more explicit overview, examining changes occurring inside organizational routines. For this purpose, it seems important to explain how individual and collective memorization occurs, so as to grasp how knowledge can be converted into routines, that is to say, reach a level of stability and automaticity at a given time. Although memorization and routinization mechanisms imply a degree of permanence, our procedural and declarative knowledge, and our memorization processes, evolve so that individuals and organizations can project themselves into the future and innovate. The setting up of cognitive automatisms contributing to the creation of procedural knowledge has, in the ﬁeld of cognitive science, been the object of intensive debates concerning the question of their complexity and of the deliberation process involved. An overview of this debate is necessary, as the latter has had several implications in the observation of organizational routines. The cognitive dimension will be explored in order to have a clear picture of the memorization process which is a ﬁrst step inside the...
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