Change in New Zealand electricity companies: A study of organizational response to a deregulated market
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameDoctor of Philosophy
This thesis examines organizational responses to the deregulation of electricity industry in New Zealand between 1987 and 1997 based on a qualitative study of seven organizations. The study employs a case study methodology using semi-structured interviews for primary data collection. In total thirty-eight respondents responsible for determining the strategic direction of each organization - senior managers and organizational board members – were interviewed. Ensuring the accuracy of this raw data through a process of triangulation, data was then analysed manually to extract themes as they emerged. This thesis contributes to the body of literature on organizational change in three key areas. First, the thesis proposes that researchers should view change as a political process and therefore should examine it from a strategic choice and multilevel perspective. Second, having observed both adaptive and transformational change types in the same institutional setting, the thesis argues that ownership, governance structures and community ties – particularly when contrasting rural and urban contexts - influence the process of organizational change. Third, the thesis argues that the changes to CEO and dominant coalition are a fundamental and necessary precursor to the implementation of transformational change.