The Innovation Journal: The Public Sector Innovation Journal, 7(1), 2002, article 7.


Real Employee Empowerment: Democracy is not Laissez-faire (PDF)


Don de Guerre

Innovation Salon / Salon de l'innovation
Thursday, October 30, 2003
1238 Castle Hill Cres., 723-3199
(Details of location below)
5:30 to 9:00 pm

There are many approaches to employee empowerment and there are many failures or partial successes. After a brief review of open systems theory and its application to employee empowerment, Dr. de Guerre will discuss a case from the Municipal Government sector in which only partial employee empowerment has been attained. Reporting the characteristics of what amounts to a kind of pseudo-empowerment as low negative affect and low accountability and responsibility, Dr. de Guerre argues for the necessity of fully implementing a more participative democratic organization structure.

Dr. de Guerre teaches in the Department of Applied Human Sciences, Concordia University, Montreal. He was formerly manager of organization effectiveness, Syncrude Canada Ltd., where he led a total organization redesign process. Prior to Syncrude, Dr. de Guerre worked internationally on the development of democratic organization in various industries and economic sectors. His ongoing research interests are in the further development of open systems theory, participative planning and policymaking, the development of action research, and the new paradigm of organizing.


Cost: $10 to cover expenses. Persons cancelling less than 24 hours before the meeting will be charged the registration fee.

Registration: For more information and RSVP by Monday, October 27th to Eleanor Glor, ph. 1-613-941-2680; email:

Location: 1238 Castle Hill Cres., Ottawa. Take the Queensway West from downtown Ottawa, exiting at Maitland South. Drive up the hill about a kilometer, turn left at a light, Glenmount, and turn right at the first street, Castle Hill.

The Glenmount corner has two lights. The first goes to the right at Erindale, the second goes to the left onto Glenmount. If you get to Baseline you have gone almost a kilometer too far.


Read notes on this presentation, or see the presentation slides prepared by Dr de Guerre.


Published March 13 2004

Last updated: December 9 2016