Elite Business Schools and the Uses of Visibility

Chapter
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Global Higher Education book series (PSGHE)

Abstract

Elite business schools use ensembles of images, texts, video, and audio not only to shape how others see them, but to teach students from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds how to recognize one another as potential members of shared elite projects. Focusing on the website visibilities of two top-rated business schools in the United States, Harvard Business School (HBS) and the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, this chapter examines how elite business schools use visibility ensembles to provide a “socially organized way of seeing and understanding events that are answerable to the distinctive interests of a particular social group” (Goodwin 1994, p. 606), to “direct” the viewer “towards a meaning chosen in advance” (Barthes 2004, p. 156).

Keywords

Elites Visibility Brands 

References

  1. Anteby, M. (2013). Manufacturing Morals: The Values of Silence in Business School Education. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Arvidsson, A. (2005). Brands: A Critical Perspective. Journal of Consumer Culture, 5, pp. 235–258.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Balmer, J, and Wang, W-Y. (2016). The Corporate Rand and Strategic Direction: Senior Business School Managers’ Cognitions of Corporate Brand Building and Management. Journal of Brand Management, 23(1), pp. 8–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Barley, S. (2010). Building an Institutional Field to Corral a Government: A Case to Set an Agenda for Organization Studies. Organization Studies, 31(6), pp. 777–805.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Barthes, R. (2004). The Rhetoric of the Image. In: C. Handa, ed., Visual Rhetoric in a Digital World: A Critical Sourcebook. Boston: Bedford St. Martin’s, pp. 152–163.Google Scholar
  6. Bauman, Z. (1998). Globalization. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  7. Benjamin, W. (1968). The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction. In: H. Arendt, ed., Illuminations. New York: Schocken, pp. 217–251.Google Scholar
  8. Berg, P., and Kreiner, K. (1990). Corporate Architecture: Turning Physical Settings into Symbolic Resources. In: P. Gagliardi, ed., Symbols and Artifacts: View of the Corporate Landscape. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter, pp. 41–67.Google Scholar
  9. Brighenti, A. (2012). New Media and Urban Motilities: A Territoriologic Point of View. Urban Studies, 49(2), pp. 399–414.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Butler, J. (2015). Notes towards a Performative Theory of Assembly. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Byrne (2013). Wharton or Booth: Where Would You Go? [online] Poets & Quants. Available at: http://poetsandquants.com/2013/12/09/where-would-you-go-wharton-or-booth/ [Accessed 1 December 2016].
  12. Chu, J., and Davis, G. (2013). Who Killed the Inner Circle? The Collapse of the American Corporate Interlock Network. Available at: http://opensiuc.lib.siu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1000&context=pnconfs_2011 [Accessed 13 December 2016].
  13. Courpasson, D., Golcharski, D., and Sallaz, J. (2012). Rethinking Power in Organizations, Institutions, and Markets: Classical Perspectives, Current Research, and the Future Agenda. In: D. Courpasson, D. Golsorkhi, and J.J. Sallaz, eds., Rethinking Power in Organizations, Institutions, and Markets (Research in the Sociology of Organizations, Volume 34). Bingley: Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp. 1–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Demeritt, D. (2001). Scientific Forest Conservation and the Statistical Picturing of Nature’s limits in the Progressive-Era United States. Environment and Planning D, 19(4), pp. 431–459.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Djonov, E., Knox, J. S., and Zhao, S. (2015). Interpreting Websites in Educational Contexts: A Social-Semiotic, Multimodal Approach. In: P. Smeyers, et al., eds, International Handbook of Interpretation in Educational Research. Dordrecht: Springer, pp. 315–345.Google Scholar
  16. Drori, G. S., Delmestri, G., and Oberg, A. (2013). Branding the University: Relational Strategy of Identity Construction in a Competitive Field. In: L. Engwall and P. Scott, eds., Trust in Higher Education Institutions. London: Portland Press, pp. 134–147.Google Scholar
  17. Easterling, K. (2014). Extrastatecraft: The Power of Infrastructure Space. London: Verso.Google Scholar
  18. Flyvbjerg, B. (2006). Five Misunderstandings About Case-Study Research. Qualitative Inquiry, 12, pp. 219–245CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Foucault, M. (1979). Discipline and Punish. New York: Vintage.Google Scholar
  20. Frank, R. (2004). Are Arms Races in Higher Education a Problem? [online] EDUCAUSE, Forum for the Future of Higher Education. Available at: https://net.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/ffp0412s.pdf [Accessed 13 Dec 2016].
  21. Gershon, I. (2014). Selling Your Self in the United States. PoLAR: Political and Legal Anthropology Review, 37(2), pp. 281–295.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Ghertner, D. (2015). Rule by Aesthetics: World-Class City Making in Delhi. Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Goodwin, C. (1994). Professional Vision. American Anthropologist, 96(3), pp. 606–633.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Gordon, N. (2002). On Visibility and Power: An Arendtian Corrective of Foucault. Human Studies, 25(2), pp. 125–145.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Haggerty, K., and Ericson, R. (2000). The Surveillant Assemblage. British Journal of Sociology, 51(4), pp. 605–622.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Handelman, D. (2010). Folding and Enfolding Walls: Statist Imperatives and Bureaucratic Aesthetics in Divided Jerusalem. Social Analysis, 54(2), pp. 60–79.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Khan, S. (2012). The Sociology of Elites. Annual Review of Sociology, 38, pp. 361–377CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Kirshstein, R., and Kadamus, J. (2012). Climbing Walls and Climbing Tuitions. Washington: American Institutes for Research.Google Scholar
  29. Klingmann (2007). Brandscapes. Cambridge: The MIT Press.Google Scholar
  30. Law, J. (1986). On the Methods of Long Distance Control: Vessels, Navigation, and the Portuguese Route to India. In: J. Law, ed., Power, Action and Belief: A New Sociology of Knowledge?. Henly: Routledge, pp. 234–263.Google Scholar
  31. Marcus, J. (2012). Public Universities Plow Ahead with Billions in Construction Despite Tight Budgets. [online] The Hechinger Report. Available at: http://bit.ly/2bFodbw [Accessed 13 Dec 2016].
  32. Martin, A. (2012). Building a Showcase Campus, Using an I.O.U. [online] The New York Times. Available at: http://nyti.ms/2bNPZB7 [Accessed 13 Dec 2016].
  33. Massey, D. (1999). Power-Geometries and the Politics of Space-Time. Heidelberg: Department of Geography, University of Heidelberg.Google Scholar
  34. Meyer, R. E., Höllerer, M. A., Jancsary, D., and Van Leeuwen, T. (2013). The Visual Dimension in Organizing, Organization, and Organization Research: Core Ideas, Current Developments, and Promising Avenues. The Academy of Management Annals, 7(1), pp. 487–553.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Mills, C.W. (1956). The Power Elite. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  36. Mitchell, C. (1983). Case and Situation Analysis. Sociological Review, 31(2), pp. 187–211.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Mizruchi, M. S. (2013). The Fracturing of the American Corporate Elite. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Mumby, D. (2016). Organizing Beyond Organization: Branding, Discourse, and Communicative Capitalism. Organization, 23(6), pp. 1–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Munro, R. (2001). Introduction. The Sociological Review, 49(S2), pp. 1–10.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. PTI (2013s). Ratan Tata Remembers: ‘Felt Confused and Humiliated During Early Harvard Days’. [online] The Economic Times of India. Available at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Felt-confused-and-humiliated-during-early-Harvard-days-Ratan-Tata/articleshow/27238964.cms [Accessed 13 Dec 2016].
  41. Reed, M. (2012). Researching Organizational Elites: A Critical Realist Perspective. In: D. Courpasson, D. Golsorkhi, and J.J. Sallaz, eds., Rethinking Power in Organizations, Institutions, and Markets (Research in the Sociology of Organizations, Volume 34). Bingley: Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp. 21–53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Rivera, L. (2011). Ivies, Extracurriculars, and Exclusion: Elite Employers’ Use of Educational Credentials. Research in Stratification and Mobility, 29(1), pp. 71–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Rybczynski, W. (2014). Tata Hall and the Art of Adding to the Harvard Business School Campus. Architect. [online] The Journal of the American Institute of Architects Available at:. http://bit.ly/2bNPzLh [Accessed 13 Dec 2016].
  44. Stephen, P. (2007). Wrapping It Up in a Person: The Mobility Patterns New PhDs. In: J. Lerner and S. Stern, eds., Innovation Policy and the Economy, Vol. 7. Cambridge: MIT Press, pp. 71–98.Google Scholar
  45. Tsing, A. (2000). Inside the Economy of Appearances. Public Culture, 12(1), pp. 115–144.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Weizman, E. (2012). The Political Plastic. Fulcrum, 49, p. 49.Google Scholar
  47. Woods, M. (1998). Rethinking Elites: Networks, Space, and Local Politics. Environment and Planning A, 30(12), pp. 2101–2119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Ohio State UniversityColumbusUSA

Personalised recommendations