New Article: “Governing by protection: Studying the problematization of whistleblower protection in the EU”

Check out this new article published by doctoral fellow Paul Zimmermann on “Governing by protection: Studying the problematization of whistleblower protection in the EU”, which has recently been published in Administrative Theory and Practice:

Despite the proliferation of whistleblower protection legislation across the world, increasingly scholars report that these laws fail to fully protect the whistleblower. In this paper, I direct attention to the politics of whistleblower protection and suggest that the Foucauldian concept of problematization can help to clarify how legal regulation is involved in the exercise of political power. I situate my study in the EU context and the Whistleblower Protection Directive drawing on Carol Bacchi’s WPR approach. The study finds, that by mobilizing the engagement of workers in law enforcement, whistleblower protection works as a technology of power to rectify the problematics of EU government. I conclude by reflecting on the ethico-political implications of governmentalizing whistleblower protection in advanced liberal democracies.

Ephemera Special Issue on “The Ethico-Politics of Whistleblowing”

Together with Bernadette Loacker (Lancester University) and Randi Heinrichs (Lüneburg) I co-edited and ephemera special Issue (PDF) on truth-telling and whistleblowing in digital cultures. The issue opens a space for discussing the specific ‘conditions of possibility’ of truth-telling and the multiple technologies, which mediate it in contemporary digital cultures.

The notion of the ethico-politics of whistleblowing is introduced to address the irreducible entanglement of questions of ethics, politics and truth in the practice of ‘speaking out’. The special issue brings together a set of papers, acknowledging that forms and mediations of truth-telling are complex and contested. The contributions discuss questions such as: Who is, in digital cultures, considered to be qualified to speak out, and about what? Under which conditions, and with what consequences can ‘the truth’ be told? How do digital infrastructures regulate the truth, and the process of making it heard? How is the figure of the whistleblower constructed, and how do whistleblowers constitute themselves as political and ethical subjects, willing to take risks and pose a challenge, to others and themselves?

Check out the full text of the Special Issue at ephemera.

Neue Veröffentlichung: »Wie viel ‚Wahrheit’ verträgt die Organisation?«

Seit kurzem erscheint im Rahmen der Forschungsplattform “Organizations & Society” eine transdisziplinäre Working-Paper-Reihe. Es ist mir eine besondere Ehre, dass als erstes Paper in dieser Reihe das Manuskript meiner AntrittsvorlesungWie viel ‚Wahrheit’ verträgt die Organisation? Die Praktik der parrhesia als Herausforderung für moderne Organisation” erschienen ist. Der Abstract lautet wie folgt: Continue reading “Neue Veröffentlichung: »Wie viel ‚Wahrheit’ verträgt die Organisation?«”

Call for Papers for a Special Issue in Ephemera: Speaking truth to power?

Together with fellow issue editors Randi Heinrichs and Bernadette Loacker, I am inviting contributions to an ephemera special issue on “Speaking truth to power? The ethico-politics of whistleblowing in contemporary mass-mediated economy” (PDF). From the Call for Papers:

[T]his special issue situates the experience of whistleblowing in the context of contemporary discourses and practices, such as security, transparency and accountability, and is thereby particularly interested in the exploration of the ethical and political dimensions and implications of practices of whistleblowing. It raises the question of who is considered to be qualified to blow the whistle, under which conditions, about what, in what forms, with what consequences, and with what relation to power (Foucault, 2001). How is the figure of the whistleblower socially and discursively constructed and is there, for example, a specific relation to gender, race and class implied? How and at what cost do whistleblowers as political actors constitute themselves as ethical subjects, capable of taking risks and posing a challenge, capable of governing themselves and of governing others? Moreover, why are we suddenly faced with a boom of whistleblowing and an intensified ‘problematisation’ of the phenomenon in so-called digital cultures? Or, from another perspective, for which social, political, legal and also technical difficulties is whistleblowing the answer?

Deadline for submissions is March 31, 2018. All contributions should be submitted to one of the issue editors: Randi Heinrichs (randi.heinrichs AT, Bernadette Loacker (b.loacker AT, Richard Weiskopf (richard.weiskopf AT Please note that three categories of contributions are invited for the special issue: articles, notes, and reviews. Information about these types of contributions can be found at: The submissions will undergo a double-blind review process. All submissions should follow ephemera’s submission guidelines (see the ‘Abc of formatting’ guide in particular). For further information, please contact me or one of the other special issue editors.