In This Article Organization Development and Change

  • Introduction
  • Textbooks
  • Book Series
  • Handbooks
  • Journals
  • Early Roots of Organization Development and Change
  • Assessing Organizational Change
  • The Future Practice of Organization Development and Change

Management Organization Development and Change
Jean M. Bartunek
  • LAST REVIEWED: 19 October 2016
  • LAST MODIFIED: 28 January 2013
  • DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780199846740-0009


Organization development and change (ODC) is a term used to refer to organization development (OD) as it emerged in the 1950s and 1960s as a discrete area of inquiry. The term also refers to subsequent developments in planned organizational change and broader labels (such as change management) since the mid-20th century. ODC originally focused on humanistically oriented process interventions within comparatively small groups of organizational members aimed at improving their functioning. Its scope has expanded considerably over the decades to include many more types of interventions, a much wider array of participants, and a much broader scope of activity.


There are two types of ODC textbooks. One more academic type is based primarily on descriptions of different types of ODC, often including a few cases that illustrate the points. The more academic books typically include a history of OD, discussion of its key values, and discussions of the ODC process from the perspective of consultants. Books that are more practice oriented primarily include experiential exercises and cases. Both types of books tend to focus on more “micro” approaches to ODC rather than on the more global approaches that developed in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. The books with a more academic focus are Cummings and Worley 2009, Burke 2011, and Anderson 2011b. Anderson 2011a and Brown 2011 are more experientially oriented.

  • Anderson, Donald L. Cases and Exercises in Organization Development and Change. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2011a.

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    This book is a supplement to Anderson 2011b. It is composed of multiple cases about ODC processes and interventions and practical exercises.

  • Anderson, Donald L. Organization Development: The Process of Leading Organizational Change. 2d ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2011b.

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    This book is similar in design to Cummings and Worley 2009, but it comes with a supplemental book (Anderson 2011a) of cases and experiential exercises.

  • Brown, Donald R. An Experiential Approach to Organization Development. 8th ed. Boston: Prentice Hall, 2011.

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    This is the primary book oriented almost exclusively toward experiential learning of organization development and change. It focuses on developing students’ interpersonal skills.

  • Burke, W. Warner. Organization Change: Theory and Practice. 3d ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2011.

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    This book is for more advanced students and is more theoretically oriented than most ODC books.

  • Cummings, Thomas G., and Christopher G. Worley. Organization Development and Change. 9th ed. Mason, OK: South-Western Cengage Learning, 2009.

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    This is the most frequently used and most comprehensive textbook on organization development and change.

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