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In this article, we discuss temporal work and temporal politics situated between groups with different temporal orientations, arguing that attention needs to be paid to covert and unarticulated silent politics of temporal work. Drawing on a case study of a management consultancy project to redesign public health care, we explain how unarticulated temporal interests and orientations shape the construction of problems, which, in turn, legitimate tasks and time frames. We also show how task and time frames are temporarily fixed and imposed through boundary objects, and the way these may then be reinterpreted and co-opted to deflect pressure to change. Thus, we argue, unarticulated, covert and political temporal interdynamics produce expedient provisional temporal settlements, which resolve conflict in the short-term, while perpetuating it in the longer run.

Type

Journal article

Journal

Organization Studies

Publisher

Sage Publications Ltd.

Publication Date

08/2018

Volume

39

Pages

1007 - 1030

Keywords

Temporal work, temporal politics, time, boundary objects, consulting, projects, project-based and temporary organization, health care