The last few years have seen increased scholarly interest in the apparent demise of institutional memory within government. This research stream examines the extent of this demise and – importantly – what can actually be done about it. The power of storytelling looms large, with narratives providing many of the frames through which organisations remember what went wrong in the past. Embedded stories of failure – and indeed of success – get passed on not only through files but through social interaction.
The Bennett Institute is supporting a project - in partnership with colleagues from the University of Queensland, the University of Tasmania, and Southampton University – to examine how institutional memory interacts with policy processes.
• The project is funded by the Australian Research Council (ARC)
• The Cambridge component is led by Prof. Dennis C. Grube
• The Chief Investigators are Dr Alastair Stark (University of Queensland) and Professor Heather Lovell (University of Tasmania), alongside Professor Jack Corbett (University of Southampton)
- Corbett, J., Grube, D.C., Lovell, H. and Scott, R.J. Institutional Memory as Storytelling (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2020).
- Blogpost: Institutional Memory: We Need a More Dynamic Understanding of the Way Institutions Remember