Academy of Management Perspectives

Journal Information
ISSN / EISSN : 1558-9080 / 1943-4529
Published by: The Academy of Management (10.5465)
Total articles ≅ 2,241
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Herman Aguinis, Søren H. Jensen, Sascha Kraus
Academy of Management Perspectives;

We identified policy implications of organizational behavior and human resource management (OBHRM) research based on 4,026 articles in 10 journals (2010-2019). We found that policy implications are underutilized and not part of OBHRM’s zeitgeist because only 1.5% of the articles (i.e., N = 61) included them, suggesting that OBHRM risks becoming societally irrelevant. Societal irrelevance may result in lower perceived value-added, less prestige and status compared to other fields that do offer implications for policy, and less support regarding research funding. However, we see great potential for OBHRM research to make meaningful contributions to policymaking in the future because we uncovered a handful of areas that do offer some policy implications such as labor relations, leadership, training and development, justice/fairness, and diversity and inclusion. We offer a dual theory-policy research agenda focused on (a) designing empirical studies with policymaking goals in mind, (b) converting existing exploratory and explanatory research to prescriptive and normative research, (c) deriving policies from bodies of research rather than individual studies, and (d) creating policies based on integrating theories, fields, and levels of analysis. We hope our article will be a catalyst for the creation and implementation of research-based policies in OBHRM and other management subfields.
Tarun Khanna, Karim R. Lakhani, Shubhangi Bhadada, Nabil Khan, Saba Kohli Davé, Rasim Alam, Meena Hewett
Academy of Management Perspectives, Volume 35, pp 384-399;

This paper examines the role that the two lead authors’ personal connections played in the research methodology and data collection for the Partition Stories Project - a mixed methods approach to revisiting the much-studied historical trauma of the Partition of British India in 1947. The Project collected survivors’ oral histories, a data type that is a mainstay of qualitative research, and subjected their narrative data to statistical analysis to detect aggregated trends. In this paper, the authors discuss the process of straddling the dichotomies of insider/outsider and qualitative/quantitative, address the “myth of informed objectivity”, and the need for hybrid research structures with the intent to innovate in humanities projects such as this. In presenting key learnings from the project, this paper highlights the tensions that the authors faced between positivist and interpretivist methods of inquiry, between “insider” and “outsider” categories of positionality, and in the quantification of qualitative oral history data. The paper concludes with an illustrative example from one of the lead authors’ past research experiences to suggest that the tensions of this project are general in occurrence and global in applicability, beyond the specifics of the Partition case study explored here.
David B. Balkin, Rudi K. F. Bresser
Academy of Management Perspectives, Volume 35, pp 562-566;

Original article: Aguinis, H., Cummings, C., Ramani, R., and Cummings, T., “An A is an A:” The New Bottom Line for Valuing Academic Research, amp.2017.0193
Derron G. Bishop, Jennifer L. Eury, Dennis A. Gioia, Linda Klebe Treviño, Glen E. Kreiner
Academy of Management Perspectives, Volume 35, pp 435-460;

By considering our experiences of a crisis at our own organization – the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse scandal at Penn State – we argue for the value of leveraging diverse, personally relevant insider views to better understand difficult-to-study organizational phenomena, including those that are ambiguous, contested, and/or emotional. Researchers tend to study organizational dynamics from the outside-in, seeking a dominant dispassionate interpretation. In contrast, we advocate for inside-out perspectives that give voice to introspective and reflexive views – including of researchers themselves – to account for cognitive and emotional experiences of those directly affected by events. We encourage researchers to overtly reflect on their cognitive and emotional responses to research. Such personally engaged research comes with potential biases, which researchers must mitigate. Yet such research also has distinct advantages. Researchers working from the inside-out are motivated and positioned to employ deep, long-term, real-time engagement, with access to many types of sensitive data often unavailable to outsiders. Researchers for whom events have direct personal relevance as insiders to a phenomenon and/or organization, thus, have the means to bring different and deeper insight and richer understandings to organizational research by including their experiences.
Danna Greenberg, Judith A. Clair, Jamie J. Ladge
Academy of Management Perspectives, Volume 35, pp 400-417;

While often focused on theory building and intellectual credibility, management scholars have rich, complex lives outside of academia. Their non-work lives may inform the phenomenon they choose to study, the research questions they ask, and even how they engage with the field. We suggest management scholars may benefit from becoming more transparent about the connections between their lives and their research, and about how these connections inform the research process. Drawing on feminist methodology, we reflect back on our experience as working mothers researching pregnancy and motherhood at work. In so doing we uncover four complexities that arise when conducting research that connects to one’s personal experience. We label these complexities: 1) engaging personal and professional selves; 2) managing power dynamics; 3) integrating emotional and rational understanding; and 4) advancing theory and practice. In examining our research process from the perspective of feminist methodology, we also identify tactics researchers can engage to navigate these complexities. We conclude with a discussion of how editors, reviewers, and authors can enhance the rigor and legitimacy of personally relevant research.
, Luciara Nardon, Joyce S. Osland, ,
Academy of Management Perspectives, Volume 35, pp 461-484;

The overwhelming number of refugees in the world today constitutes a major socio-economic and political challenge. With more than 50 years of scholarship on global mobility, International Business (IB) should be well positioned to address this challenge. Yet the field’s historic emphasis on expatriates has resulted in dominant assumptions and perspectives that are not relevant for other groups moving across borders. Empirical path dependence has caused significant conceptual blindness. Focusing primarily on expatriates who, in fact, represent an extreme case of international transitions, has resulted in conceptualizations of international adjustment that are partial and incomplete. These conceptualizations overly rely on individual- and organizational-level factors at the expense of critical macro-level factors. Extending the domain of IB scholarship by examining the contrasting extreme case of refugees opens up the field to new theorizing and a broader, more accurate conceptualization of international adjustment. Studying the international adjustment of refugees exposes previously taken-for-granted assumptions and generates insights that will allow IB as well as general management scholars to develop more robust theories and urgently needed practical interventions.
Teresa M. Amabile, Douglas T. (Tim) Hall
Academy of Management Perspectives, Volume 35, pp 347-366;

For decades, training in management research has emphasized objectivity, typically viewed as an arm’s length distance between the topic of the research and the interests of the researcher. This emphasis has led most scholars to avoid research topics of deep personal relevance – or at least to avoid acknowledging such relevance. We argue that this headlong pursuit of objectivity has led the field to vastly undervalue what we call self-relevant research: immersive field research on a topic with which the researcher has had significant personal experience, and which is important to or part of the researcher’s self-identity. As an illustrative case, we draw on our own current experience in a team of scholars doing self-relevant research on retirement. We argue that an embrace of self-relevant research can enhance the richness, validity, and methodological diversity of management research, and can actually be essential for understanding phenomena that involve unusual experiences, high degrees of emotionality, or identity issues. We discuss the advantages and challenges that arise when researchers have a deeply personal connection to the topic of research, and we describe measures that researchers can take to leverage the advantages and mitigate the challenges of doing such personally relevant research. We also highlight the particular value of engaging in group self-reflection in the course of collaborative research of this type, and discuss implications for both the field and researchers in management science.
Dana McDaniel Sumpter, Danna Greenberg, Sharon H. Kim
Academy of Management Perspectives, Volume 35, pp 485-502;

As fields of study solidify, agreement forms among scholars on how to define and measure constructs that are foundational to theory building. We refer to this agreement process as construct convergence. While construct convergence is essential for theorizing, we suggest there may also be negative, be they unintended, consequences of construct convergence. In this paper, we explore this tension. We rely on an example from our work/family enrichment research, along with exemplars of other construct development paths, to identify the drivers of construct convergence and illustrate how construct convergence may inhibit construct evolution that integrates new theoretical perspectives and is attentive to shifting organizational and work realities. We conclude with a discussion of how scholars can better manage the tension between construct convergence and construction evolution so that we continue to build robust theory that remains connected to contemporary management practice.
Glen E. Kreiner, Aparna Joshi
Academy of Management Perspectives, Volume 35, pp 418-434;

Liminality refers to being “betwixt and between” (Turner, 1967). We draw on boundary theory to propose and elaborate upon the notion of “liminal researchers” – the in-between status we hold when we (1) conduct research that is personally meaningful and/or in highly familiar settings and yet (2) we are not actually a member of the group being studied. Indeed, being a liminal researcher in organizational studies denotes dwelling on the boundary of the group or phenomenon being studied and puts us in a position to be neither fully in nor fully out of the entity or topic of interest. To further develop these ideas, we draw on our personal and professional experiences as parents and researchers of individuals with developmental disabilities. We reflect on management-related projects that we conduct on students and workers with developmental disabilities and how a highly reflexive stance facilitates our research. Throughout, we use a boundary theory lens to explore being liminal researchers and provide strategies for authors, editors, and reviewers.
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