Metamorphosis of a kibbutz industry: An Israeli case study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to focus on a current trend in kibbutz industries, and to examine the numerous changes at Millennium Industries. Design/methodology/approach – A case study was carried out documenting the organizational biography of Millennium Industries. Ethnographic interviews were held with kibbutz members employed by the organization, former CEO’s and with other workers. Findings – The research describes the life cycle of the plant from its beginnings, through its maturity, its growth until its decline. It also explains the organizational failure of the plant, in terms of its background and the difficulties of managing a kibbutz industry in an era of global economy. The causes of its decline stem mainly from a kibbutz-style management based on non-professional involvement of the community in business, and incompatible with the rough competition of capitalistic markets. The plant was finally sold to a private investor, thereby losing its identity as a kibbutz plant. Research limitations/implications – As a single case-study this research cannot pretend to statistical generalization of the findings but linked to the kibbutz and the organizational literature, findings seem to allow generalization of theoretical propositions concerning evolution of the kibbutz industry (an analytic generalization according to Yin, 2013). Originality/value – While the kibbutz society and its industry are involved in deep changes for the two last decades, very little research was made on kibbutz industry. This paper should contribute to actualize the social knowledge about these specific and interesting phenomena.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-197
Number of pages17
JournalEuroMed Journal of Business
Issue number2
StatePublished - 6 Jul 2015
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Emerald Group Publishing Limited.


  • Clan culture
  • Community-based organization
  • Kibbuzt industry
  • Organization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting (all)
  • Finance


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