Publication Details

This article was originally published as Leitch, S & Davenport, S, The Politics of discourse: Marketization of the New Zealand Science and Innovation system, Human Relations. 58(7), 2005, 891-912.


The politics of change are both played out within the arena of discourse and dedicated to transforming that arena. In this article, we bring together critical discourse theory and political process theory in order to highlight the ways in which a process of discourse transformation can be deployed by organisations to effect political and economic change. In the process we examine the discursive interplay between the actors as well as the discursive constraints on action. The context for our analysis was the attempt by a national science funding body to transform the New Zealand discourse of science and innovation in order to significantly change the behaviour of multiple stakeholder organisations. This discourse transformation had internal and external dimensions and required a radical restructuring of the organization to create a structure capable of driving and supporting the desired changes.



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