Gestão & Produção
Gestão & Produção
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Organizational secrecy as viewed by the agents of a multinational corporation: A Case Study

Homero Cremm Busnelo; Julio Cesar Donadone

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abstract: Only a limited number of theoretical studies have been conducted with regards to the issue of organizational secrecy. This study examines similar and different views about secrecy within three executive levels of an industrial multinational organization named Motores. This is achieved through a case study for which the data has been collected by using a survey-like questionnaire and semi-structured interviews. The different maturity levels and process structures in the enterprise account not only for different stages, concerns, and types of knowledge involved in addressing secrecy, but also for the role boundaries among the agents surveyed. Furthermore, while these agents are well acquainted with suppliers and customers, whereby confidentiality is ensured through confidentiality agreements (NDAs) and patent protection, their relationships with institutions and organizations appear to be areas of little or no knowledge, especially when it concerns competitors, class entities, and government relations. Leaks of classified information occur, and the places and situations where they may take place are identified. No potential mitigation situations were identified in our case study, and no systemic protocol exists for dealing with classified topics in the different areas where secrecy is involved, including business strategies. Transparency is recognized and desired; however, its risks and consequences require evaluation.


Information secrecy, Transparency, Hierarchical view, Social process, Governance


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