• Nikolaj Boddum Pedersen
4. term, Communication, Master (Master Programme)
This thesis explores the potential and challenges of Appreciative Inquiry as a methodological framework for organizational development in complex organizational contexts. The approach has been explored through a series of intervening workshops in collaboration with the Danish Defence.

The thesis springs from my personal curiosity and interest in dialogic, innovative and collaborative processes, where the aim is to establish an understanding of Appreciative Inquiry as a methodological framework when applying it in a complex organizational context, where the theoretical and human assumptions of the method are not a natural part of the organization. Cooperation with the Danish Defence is part of my employment at the Logistic Regiment at Aalborg Barracks. The regiment is an organizational unit under the Danish Defence and constitutes the complex organizational context that I explore in this thesis.

In my thesis, the scientific approach has been based on Søren Barlebo Wenneberg’s presentation of social constructivism, as I participated in the interactions at the respective workshops by contributing in the perception of the socially-constructed thoughts. In order to explore the particular subject, I have taken an action research approach to the Appreciative Inquiry, in which I adapted and implemented a change process. In addition, I took an ethnographic position since I wanted to explore the potential and challenges associated with the Appreciative Inquiry as the methodological framework, which ethnography could contribute as I focused on the social and human actions during the change process.
The organizational development took a methodically and theoretical basis in the Appreciative Inquiry’s 4D process by David L. Cooperrider and Suresh Srivastva. Through five appreciatively workshops, I facilitated a group of operational staff, whose focus was on internal communication at the regimen. Together with the participants, we prepared some positive future visions for the regiment’s internal communication that we presented to a representative of the management.

The overall findings and therefore the conclusion of this thesis’ is that there are more challenges than potential when using Appreciative Inquiry as a methodological framework for organizational development in complex organizational contexts. To increase the potential and learning, I have prepared a revised version of the 4D-process. A so-called 6D-process, which is taking the complexity of the organization and the participants’ individual accommodative learning into account, as well as integrating an evaluative phase to prepare for a possible new organizational development or evaluation of the completed process.
Publication date31 May 2018
Number of pages78
External collaboratorTrænregimentet, Hærens Center for Logistik og Militærpoliti
Flemming Amdisen trr@mil.dk
Information group
ID: 280176903