Organizational Science
Online ISSN : 2187-932X
Print ISSN : 0286-9713
ISSN-L : 0286-9713
ARTICLES FOR THE SPECIAL ISSUE
Organizational Facades, Distorted Substantive Discussion, and Misinterpretation:
A Case Study of the First Restructuring Plan of Japanese National Railways
Yuki Tsuboyama
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2022 Volume 55 Issue 4 Pages 39-54

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Abstract

Organizational facades are symbolic fronts made by organizational members to assure their stakeholders of the legitimacy of the organizations, which are intentionally decoupled from their substantive actions. This in-depth historical case study of the first restructuring plan of the Japanese National Railways in the late 1960s investigates intraorganizational dynamics triggered by the overestimated demand forecast of its freight railway business in the plan. It reveals how the forecast affected its substantive action through increased paperwork for non-substantive matters, the distorted substantive discussion between upper managers, and the misunderstanding of upper managers' strategic intention by lower managers.

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