Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Resistance to change. Exploring the convergence of institutions, organizations and the mind toward a common phenomenon

Patalano, Roberta (2007): Resistance to change. Exploring the convergence of institutions, organizations and the mind toward a common phenomenon.

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Abstract

Resistance to change is not a new concept in economic literature (Coch and French 1948, Boulding 1956). However, in the last few decades it has acquired specific connotations and meanings that deserve attention. The first aim of the paper is to analyze how the concept has evolved since its introduction by Lewin (1946) and how it has diversified. Having acknowledged that resistance characterizes institutions, organizations and the mind, we suggest that the convergence toward such phenomenon is not surprising. Indeed, it may be explained by taking the bounds that affect the cognitive and emotional counterparts of economic behavior into account. We finally reinterpret resistance to change as a heuristic that helps manage the natural tendency of human beings to fear, uncertainty and its expected effects.

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