Organizational change and Canada's air force

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Paquette, Dirk
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This thesis identifies the most influential factors in organizational change through an examination of the Canadian Air Force. The significant factors influencing the decision to change revolve around the market, as well as other factors that are germane to the organization's external environment. However, as an organization matures, another important factor stemming from within gains increasing influence, that of the organization's internal culture. During the formative years of Canada's air force, it was characterized by civilian roles as a result of the absence of an external military threat, the lack of funding, and the organization's primary goal of survival. This function lasted until 1936 when a significant change in the external environment led to a shift to military functions. During World War II, the emphasis was on the adoption of strategic bombing role without debate. In many ways, it foreshadows the impact of the external environment of the post-war period. Specifically, the adoption of this role resulted from the combination of domestic external forces and the imprint of the Royal Air Force (RAF). In the post-war period, Canada's commitments to NATO and NORAD in response to the evolving Soviet threat was significantly filtered through the RCAF's close relationship with the USAF. At the same time, the RCAF's culture had to deal with Paul Hellyer's reorganization. Demonstrating the staying power of its culture, the air force was reborn with the re-establishment of an independent command in 1975. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)