Organizing Conflict: The Rhizome of Jihad

Tuomas Kuronen, Aki-Mauri Huhtinen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


In this essay, we study the emergence of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) from the theoretical perspective of the “rhizome” coined by Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari. We understand organizing in general and conflict emergence in particular through the becoming of the rhizomatic ontology of organizing. In our view, the emergence of organizing is a manifestation of a rhizomatic basis of things, seen in nomadic strategies of pursuing revolutionary aims and resisting power hegemonies. We discuss how armed resistance groups relate to time and duration, and their stark contrast to Western professional, expeditionary armies operating in a clearly defined space and time. We complement the established philosophical and organizing-theoretical approaches to being and becoming in understanding conflict emergence with the rhizomatic perspective. We conclude our essay by discussing both theoretical and practical implications for understanding and managing conflict.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalJournal of Management Inquiry
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)47-61
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 17.08.2016
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed


  • 512 Business and Management
  • 611 Philosophy
  • conflict management
  • organization theory
  • philosophy of science
  • power and politics
  • strategy


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