EGOS History: short overview

 

The European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS) was founded in November 1973 by 13 European scientists from seven countries as an international network that exists through conferences, personal relationships and the dissemination of information, knowledge and dialogues.

EGOS' initial structure was based on a Coordinating Committee, national correspondents, a changing Organizing Committee for the (then) biennial Colloquia and the initiation of Autonomous Working Groups. The Coordinating Committee consisted of three members, the national correspondents implemented events in their own countries, and the 13 Autonomous Working Groups deepened cooperation between, and knowledge of, the individual themes.

 

The organization of the EGOS Colloquia was initially ensued by the call for expression of interest. Like EGOS itself, the Colloquia were organized through the co-option of others, and no sub-themes were excluded. To support young researchers, pre-Colloquium workshops for PhD students and Post-Docs were established, taking place the two days before the Colloquium (since 2005). Furthermore, a printed newsletter disseminated reports about the Colloquia as well as information on members, member meetings, activities and important dates.

 

The EGOS Executive Secretariat was established in 1974 to provide the services needed to allow the network to function. Since then, it has been based in ten different locations; inter alia, it is responsible for keeping member lists and acting as the first point of contact for members, Colloquium organizers and the Coordination Committee.

 

In 1998, Standing Working Groups (SWGs) were established, each having the responsibility of organizing one sub-theme at each EGOS Colloquium, developing a network of scientists researching on one specific field and including the next generation of researchers.

 

The first EGOS website was launched in 1998, and since 2002, this website provides a password-protected area for members which holds the Online Library of papers presented at the EGOS Colloquia, an archive to the individual Colloquia and the member database. Today the website is, especially after several relaunches since 2008, the key service platform for EGOS.

The idea of having a journal came from the Editor-in-Chief of de Gruyter publishers in 1975. His company published the EGOS journal Organization Studies until 2002, when SAGE Publications took over. The Editorial Office has been based in Athens since 2003.

 

In the late 1980s, the scientific field was becoming more and more institutionalized and formalized, so the pressure grew on EGOS to move on from its loose network form and develop into a professional association. The coordination committee thus began the search for a possible legal form. EGOS was formalized in 1998 by registering as an association under Belgian law in Brussels; the starting capital came from a Finnish foundation. Being an association, EGOS has to elect a Board, and the interval between the Colloquia has been reduced from two years to one.

 

There were new guidelines for EGOS Colloquium organizers, which include announcing the general theme, sub-themes, the pre-Colloquium activities and the important dates and deadlines. Rules for the selection of main themes, sub-themes, convenors, key-note speakers, budget planning, etc., were also set

 

During the annual Colloquia – at the General Assembly – certain items on the agenda recur at regular intervals: the approval of (a) the Financial Statement of the previous year and (b) of the Budget for the coming year, reports on the number of members, issues surrounding Organization Studies, activities of the newly established Standing Working Groups (SWGs), as well as information on forthcoming Colloquia and discussions about the future of EGOS.

 

Today, EGOS is a worldwide scientific, network-based association in the field of organization research.

 

By the beginning of 2012, EGOS had more than 2,000 members from 46 nations!