Lewis, Marianne W.: Paradoxes of change and changing through paradox

Jonathan Schad, Ella Miron-Spektor

Research output: Chapter in Book / Report / Conference proceedingChapterAcademic


This chapter explores Marianne Lewis's work as an organizational change thinker. To her, change is best understood as driven by the interplay of paradoxical forces. These opposites contradict one another, but are at the same time fundamentally interwoven. Over the past two decades, Marianne Lewis translated this abstract idea into one of the most burgeoning fields of management and organization research: paradox theory. Paradox theory helps us understand the nature of tensions in organizations, the recursive dynamics of opposites, and approaches to manage them successfully. We explore paradox theory's path from an initial idea to an established framework, a path reflecting Lewis's scholarly work. Looking at paradox theory through the biography of one of its key intellectual figures sheds new light on how her collected work impacted the way we understand organizational change.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Palgrave Handbook of Organizational Change Thinkers
EditorsDavid B. Szabla
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9783030383244
ISBN (Print)9783030383237
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes


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