Temporary organizational forms exist in every economic and social environment. They are prevalent in the business community as well as in the public and non-profit sector. Their common defining characteristic is a temporal life span, although their scope, size, purpose, and organizational structure varies. The literature on temporary organizations has surged over the past decade, yet there have been few empirical studies. The purpose of this paper is twofold. First, it provides a case study on temporary organizations: Elections Canada’ returning office. It relates the case to a wider body of literature to examine where, on the wider spectrum of temporary organizations, it is positioned. The second part of the paper widens the focus on temporary structures and reviews a broader set of literature. The aim is to compare the EC case to other forms of temporary organizations and construct a preliminary typology that might be useful for future research.
EMBA Project-Simon Fraser University
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