Expert organization as a communal developer

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Pinni B building auditorium 1096, address: Kanslerinrinne 1.


Doctoral defence of M.Sc. (Admin.) Arja Lumiaho

Asiantuntijayhteisö toiminnan yhteisöllisenä kehittäjänä : Case fysiatrian poliklinikka (Expert organization as a communal developer : case department of physical and rehabilitation medicine)

The field of science of the dissertation is Administrative science.

The opponent is docent Olli-Pekka Viinamäki (University of Vaasa). Professor Jari Stenvall acts as the custos.

The language of the dissertation defence is Finnish.

Expert organization as a communal developer

This study examines the operational development of a health care unit from a communal point of view. The premise of this research is the notion that different kind of waste exists in some health care functions. This waste can be decreased and managed by executing together by employees. These are minor improvements in operations and work environment. This research aims to study the outcome and results of communal development, the different factors therein, and personal experiences by employees. The aim of the development process is to identify the waste in operations and decreasing that waste by executing mutually agreed actions. The study focuses on detailed everyday tasks which can be influenced on a personal level, with each employee individually. This is a case study assisted by elements of action research. The target is the department of physical medicine and rehabilitation in a specialized care level hospital.

Many challenges were identified hindering communal development. Mainly there are lacking teamwork skills, clinginess to old practices and consequent resistance to change, and negative attitudes. Behind this resistance is the threat losing autonomy, which is a great part in any expert tasks. The study also shows how slow development process and change in culture can be.

Developing and establishing dialogical, reflective and learning atmosphere, which is included in communal development is a long-term commitment in health care environment. The study found that reflective analysis of one`s work was partly difficult in a group. The study identified challenges in maintaining momentum and continuity for systematic communal development and change. This is in accord to previous studies. Organization development and Lean Management can be described well suitable for work process development. However, during implementation the before-mentioned prerequisites for the success of employee based actions must be observed.


The dissertation is published in the publication series of Acta Universitatis Tamperensis; 2325, Tampere University Press, Tampere 2017. The dissertation is also published in the e-series Acta Electronica Universitatis Tamperensis; 1829, Tampere University Press 2017.

The dissertation can be ordered at: Juvenes e-bookstore or by e-mail:

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