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History of Sc'MOI


The Standing Conference for Management & Organization Inquiry (Sc’Moi)

(sc'MOI ? pronounced ?say MOI? and formerly the organization theory track of the International Academy of Business Disciplines) 
Standing Conference for Management & Organization Inquiry


History of sc?MOI Conference venues & Highlights - Contact David Boje to add your stories and highlights below.

Sc'MOI is an unfolding, never ending story. The emergence of sc;MOI happens over many incidents. Sc'Moi is a time and place for good fortune, where each presenter takes pleasure in the other's goods and goodness. Sharing stories of our ill fortune, as well as our fortune is an ongoing activity to deepen our friendship as Standing Conference members. While there is utility in our Organization Inquiry, we aim at what Aristotle called Virtues (Justice, Goodness) and at what Bakhtin called answerability (to hear a story of distress and be compelled to take ethical action). The kinds of friendship for pleasure, utility, or virtue is not found in most other conferences. For at the very large ones there are too many people to distribute one's self among without exhaustion. We hope you find sc'MOI a choiceworthy experience. We hope you will contribute to our ongoing, unfolding story, and depend the good fortune of our members.

FOUNDING STORY: In 1991, David Boje ventured to Detroit to IABD (International Academy of Business Disciplines) to present a paper mysteriously rejected by the Academy of Management conference, though it had all excellent ratings by each reviewer. There was no OT (Organization Theory) track at IABD, so Boje was wedged into some other track's session. When Boje asked the conference organizer about the track that was not there, Boje was made track chair and asked to rebuild the taack. In 1992 Boje, along with Robert Dennehy chaired the new track, and retitled it Postmodern OT. Our focus was on storytelling, and postmodern theory. Over the years we expanded this focus to include critical theory, postcolonial theory, and critical pedagogy. In 1996, Grace Ann Rosile took over as track chair, and the professional quality of the event took a leap forward. We continued our affiliation with IABD until 2004, when several incidents happened. Boje had been elected conference president in 2003, and 2004 was his incoming term.

Exhibit 1: Boje (Ronald) and IABD conference founder, executive director, and good friend to us all, Abbas Alkhafaji from "Decapitating Boje"

Inquisitor 1: Bøje did dress as a clown and perform an anti-corporate play (McDonald’s goes to Iraq), and at the formal dinner no less. We were trapped there, It is so very inappropriate for an in-coming President to do this, to dress as a clown.

Bøje: Are we not all clowns?

Board Member 1: (rising to his feet) “I am not a clown, what an insult to the conference leaders!” Board Member 2: (also rising to his feet): I am not a clown.”

However, a faction of agitators, decided no postmodernist, and certainly no peace activist would be allowed to be installed as president. Secondly, there was a sea change at IABD where many people wanted to show their support for U.S. involvement in the Iraq war. Thirdly, in 2004, several contrived reasons were put forward why Boje could not be president, including, (a) dressing as a clown in a play critical of McDonaldization (unbecoming to any president), (b) that the track ran over its time, and caused another track (not scheduled) to be late in starting a session, and (c) a verbal assault on two Ph.D. students in the Postmod OT track and a verbal response by Boje to the conference bully. All these incidents were contrived (staged) in order to create the pretext to get Boje to resign as president. After refusing to leave elected office, the faction persuaded the board to just behead Boje. The Postmod OT track, Spirituality, and International Management tracks all met and decided at this very meeting in 2004 to leave IABD and become independent. It is good that sc'MOI remains friends with IABD, has fond memories of our time there. It is also good that we became independent, autonomous, able to better provide for our members, develop our own story. The founding board of sc'MOI and its executive committee was established in 2004 in San Antonio during and after the conference. The executive directors include David Boje, Alexis Downs, Ken Ehrensol, Carolyn Gardner, and Grace Ann Rosile. One way to look at this founding story is that it was time for us to leave the IABD-nest, and fly on our own. Our first independent meeting was in 2005, and we named ourselves (sc'MOI) Standing Conference for Management and Organization Inquiry. The bonds of friendship at sc'MOI go beyond finding pleasure or utility in one another's presentation. We aim to enhance each other's good, for its own sake. Sc'MOI is pronounced (c'est moi, meaning in French, it is I). It's 'I' means the 'identity' that is a common good to all of our members. Besides a founding story, we have an identity, mission, vision, and strategy.

Sc'MOI's identity is storytelling, critical theory, critical accounting, critical culture, postmodern theory, postcolonial theory, and critical pedagogy. We began with an interest in storytelling. To this day, we encourage presenters to tell stories rather than do the Powerpoints (unless they have a photo to show). We keep our size small so that we have personal friendships that form. Friendship for Aristotle is instrumental for utility or pleasure, or it is for virtuous activity. At a large conference most of the friendships are superficial, limited to utility, and the experience is rarely pleasurable. The virtuous activity is lacking in most large conferences. Many small conferences just imitate the large Academy model. Our identity is different than that. We aim to host sessions that are more in the tradition of storytelling, more workshop than lecture, more about giving time and space for listeners to verbalize their response to a session, to engage with it.

Sc'MOI's mission is to provide conference members with utility (valuable knowledge), pleasure (enjoyable experiences), and virtuous action (putting our stories into action. We maintain a conference of utility, pleasure, and virtue friendship (extending common good), with activities that allow members to align around common interests, that hopefully make a difference in creating ethical organizations, and just society.

Sc'MOI's vision is to manage our growth so that we provide quality conference experiences, rotating between several cities in the Eastern U.S. accessible to international travelers. Our vision is to sustain our international and interdisciplinary focus and identity, to promote deepening international friendships around the world.

Sc'MOI's strategy is a niche in the interdisciplinary arena of qualitative studies of critical storytelling, critical theories of all sorts, and to keep a user-friendly community that builds its friendships beyond mere utility or pleasure of one's company, and gets at virtue of the ethic of goodness ( & translates to ethical action of organizations). This strategy includes promoting the work of conference presenters in Tamara Journal, and in other journals such as Journal of Organizational Change Management (JOCM) ,Journal of Management Spirituality and Religion, Culture & Society, and Qualitative Research in Organization & Management (QROM) that are affiliated with the members of sc'MOI. Our strategy is to look at the context of each conference venue, and make some difference by our activities there.


  1. 1991 Detroit -Genesis Story: Boje shows up to present paper in IABD OT track, but chair is sick, and no track was organized; Boje is appointed Organization Theory (OT) track chair for next year by Abbass Alkhafaji (founder of IABD in 1989)
  2. 1992 Washington D.C. - Boje and Dennehy kick off the Postmod OT track
  3. 1993 New Orleans - If you remember what happened this year contact us
  4. 1994 Pittsburgh - Stewart Clegg is keynote for the Postmod OT track; Grace Ann had attended 1st IABD (1989 Pittsburgh) and joins Postmod OT track with Deborah Summers, Terrence Krell, and many others
  5. 1995 Las Angeles (Redondo Beach) - Postmod OT track Theme "Anti-TQM" (we think this is the year against TQM) please let us know
  6. 1996 Rockville, MD (D.C.) call on critical postmodern Tojo Thatchenkery leads 1stDoctoral consortium for “Critical Theory/Postmodern methods.; Grace Ann Rosile become Track chairs
  7. 1997 Orlando - What happened this year? Let us know
  8. 1998 San Francisco - Annual meeting of Postmod OT track
  9. 1998 Juarez Mexico/El Paso (International Meeting, October)
  10. 1999 Chicago - Is this the year no room was scheduled for our track, so we met on a balcony?
  11. 2000 Las Vegas - Theme: Deconstructing Las Vegas (special issue of M@n@ging Journal; George Ritzer, keynote for critical postmodern OT track
  12. 2001 Orlando (abstracts on linecall theme (Mis)Managing in a Global Environment; Our track did a tour of Disney's Celebration Village. The tour guide said to a bus load of environmentalists, "there was nothing here before Disney!"
  13. 2002 Marina Del Rey - Philosophers Steve Best and Douglas Kellner keynote speakers for entire IABD conference
  14. 2003 Orlando - Theme: Spectacle in the Entertainment Industry; Boje elected incoming President of IABD (his beheading plan initiated throughout 2003)
  15. 2004 San Antonio -Track theme: New Perspectives for McDonaldizations: McDonalds, McUniversity, McMedia, McAcademy, McWar, and McBody; year of McDonald's plays; Boje is beheaded & New Board of sc'MOI is formed to initiate 2005 separate conference (see Dennehy History of formation of sc'MOI); or "Decapitating Boje"
  16. 2005 Philadelphia (15th Annual Meeting, 1st Sc'MOI); Theme: Manufacturing Identity (ies) ; Stanley Aronowitz conference keynote; Boje elected 1st sc'MOI President.
  17. 2006 Washington DC - Theme: Deficit of Democracy; George Ritzer Keynote address
  18. 2007 Las Vegas - Feminism and Gender issues in Las Vegas; Heather Hopfl Keynote address; Abbass Alkhafaji, an award-winning Slippery Rock University School of Business professor died Sept 20 2007 at The Johns Hopkins Medical Center in Baltimore. He was 59. His wife and six children survive him. Abbass founded the conference that hosted Sc'MOI ffrom 1991 to 2004. He was always very supportive and we miss him. More info
  19. 2008 Philadelphia - Excess of History
  20. 2009 Orlando - Organizaing Space and Place
  21. 2010
  22. 2011
  23. 2012
  24. 2013
  25. 2014 - April 9-11 Las Vegas NV
  26. 2015 - Philadelphia -
    sc'MOI 2016
    April 14th - 16th
    Wyndham Independence Mall
    Philadelphia, PA



Conference President of sc'MOI David Boje (



Grace Ann Rosile (


Choose a Track to send your abstract to: Critical StrategyCross-Cultural ManagementCritical Organization Theory ; or Spirituality in Management Track ; or OD track


And get involved; leave your comment at Discussion Board sc'MOI


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