Structuring of International Organizations for Rapidly Changing Environments
- International Institutions
Short of overall reform, how can International Organizations (IOs) more effectively address rapidly changing global contexts and problems? In this roundtable, we zoom in on the more subtle role of IO staff and the organizational structures within which they carry out their work. IOs are also systems of people and working interactions, yet the structural micro-foundations of collective dynamics in bureaucracies are often overlooked in favor of member state politics and arrangements. We begin from the premise that an IO is better fit for purpose when its staff can sense opportunities and challenges and accordingly reconfigure the nature of the problem to be solved. In all types of organizations, including IOs, staff play an important role in interpreting internal and external dynamics, detecting change, and transforming the ways in which problems are addressed. These are important parts of the organization’s dynamic capabilities – that is, its ability to sense and reconfigure problems. But not all organizational structures are conducive to such capabilities. We therefore seek to spark discussion on how IOs can better structure the working interactions of their staff to improve their ability to address a rapidly changing environment.
- Agi VeresUNDP Regional Bureau for Europe and CIS (Switzerland)
- Ewen MacleodUNHCR (Switzerland)In-person
- Valentina MeleUniversità Bocconi (Italy)In-person
- Cédric DupontGraduate Institute of International and Development Studies (Switzerland)In-person