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Göran Ahrne and Nils Brunsson

A growing number of organizations are meta-organizations; rather than individuals they have other organizations as their members. This comprehensive book explains, in-depth, the unique way in which meta-organizations function, how they differ from organizations with individual membership, and how they are crucial agents in the process of globalization.
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Chapter 8: Meta-organizations and individual-based organizations

Göran Ahrne and Nils Brunsson


The fundamental difference between meta-organizations and individual-based organizations is often overlooked because analysts take for granted that organizational members are always individuals. Thus, it is common in studies of meta-organizations to regard their employees as their members (see, for instance, Barnett and Finnemore 2002). But having employees does not distinguish meta-organizations from other types of organizations. A metaorganization is a special kind of organization with special problems and solutions because its members are organizations.

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