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Från dinosaurie till modern myndighet: Fallet Trafikverket – hur medarbetare skapar mening i relation till värdeordet modern
Institutionen för samhällsvetenskaper, Södertörns högskola.
2017 (Swedish)In: Språk & Stil, ISSN 1101-1165, Vol. NF 27, p. 189-220Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

To stand out as modern is an ambition shared by many Swedish public authorities. In the Swedish Transport Administration modernity is a core value, and the word modern is used frequently in the Administration’s strategic as well as informal organizational communication. The aim of this study is to complement earlier studies of strategic documents codifying organizational core values in the Swedish public sector, by focusing on co-workers’ sense-making in relation to buzzwords. This study is at the same time a discourse-analytical and social-semiotic concept analysis, focusing on the concept modern in a specific organizational context. The research questions are: How (in terms of use of communicative strategies) do co-workers in the Transport Administration make sense of the word modern? What content do they ascribe to the word, and what image of the authority does this create? To answer these questions discussions with three focus groups were arranged, transcribed and analyzed. The results show that the co-workers used both semiotic and material resources to make sense of the word modern. Some of the communicative strategies used were metaphors, direct quotations, comparisons, contrasts, legitimations and definitions. Furthermore, in the focus groups meaning was created interdiscursively and in an interplay between different contexts, resulting in the Swedish Transport Administration appearing as an organization trapped between partially conflicting discourses. In other words, the Swedish Transport Administration stands out as a public authority which partially tries to emulate a company.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. NF 27, p. 189-220
Keywords [en]
modern, sense-making, core value, buzzword, Swedish public sector, discourse analysis, concept analysis
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URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-338876OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-338876DiVA, id: diva2:1173910
Available from: 2018-01-15 Created: 2018-01-15 Last updated: 2018-01-15

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf