Formal and Real Authority in Organizations

DSpace/Manakin Repository

Formal and Real Authority in Organizations

Citable link to this page

. . . . . .

Title: Formal and Real Authority in Organizations
Author: Aghion, Philippe; Tirole, Jean

Note: Order does not necessarily reflect citation order of authors.

Citation: Aghion, Philippe, and Jean Tirole. 1997. Formal and real authority in organizations. Journal of Political Economy 105(1): 1-29.
Full Text & Related Files:
Abstract: This paper develops a theory of the allocation of formal authority (the right to decide) and real authority (the effective control over decisions) within organizations, and it illustrates how a formally integrated structure can accommodate various degrees of "real" integration. Real authority is determined by the structure of information, which in turn depends on the allocation of formal authority. An increase in an agent's real authority promotes initiative but results in a loss of control for the principal. After spelling out (some of) the main determinants of the delegation of formal authority within organizations, the paper examines a number of factors that increase the subordinates' real authority in a formally integrated structure: overload, lenient rules, urgency of decision, reputation, performance measurement, and multiplicity of superiors. Finally, the amount of communication in an organization is shown to depend on the allocation of formal authority.
Published Version: doi:10.1086/262063
Terms of Use: This article is made available under the terms and conditions applicable to Other Posted Material, as set forth at http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:dash.current.terms-of-use#LAA
Citable link to this page: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:4554125

Show full Dublin Core record

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

  • FAS Scholarly Articles [7450]
    Peer reviewed scholarly articles from the Faculty of Arts and Sciences of Harvard University
 
 

Search DASH


Advanced Search
 
 

Submitters