Toward a theory of organizational implosion

Barry Bozeman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


The essay seeks to develop theory for a particular type of organizational disaster, "organizational implosion." The organization implosion concept is developed in depth, but a key aspect of it is that organizational members, acting in their official capacities, play a significant role in the havoc wreaked on their organization. Hypotheses are presented about organization disaster and implosion, relating organizational outcomes to the nature of external controlling organizations, communications among organizational sets, and types of interdependence among organizations. A preliminary model of organizational implosion is presented, along with case illustrations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)119-140
Number of pages22
JournalAmerican Review of Public Administration
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • environmental constraint
  • organization theory
  • organizational disaster
  • organizational implosion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Marketing


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