Check out the SAP Program for the AoM Annual Meeting 2016 in Anaheim

Cover-SAP-AoM-Program2016We proudly present the full program of the Strategizing Activities and Practices Interest Group at the 2016 Academy of Management Annual Meeting in Anaheim.

Starting with several Professional Development Workshops on Friday and Saturday, which are part of first ever Doctoral & Early Career Program, the program lists all SAP sessions of this year’s AoM Annual Meeting. Furthermore, the program also features SAP social events such as the “Informal Meet & Greet breakfast discussing ‘Methodological insights'” on Sunday and, of course, this year’s SAP Keynote speech by Jean M. Bartunek (Boston College) about “The US Consumer Financial Protection Bureau” on Monday at 9:45 AM.

Check out the SAP AoM program as a PDF.

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Workshop on “Connections in Action: Keeping Track of Large Social Phenomena using Relational and ‘Micro-sociological’ approaches”

Location: University of Warwick, Coventry, UK

Date: December 5th (2pm) to December 6th (4pm)

Theme: One of the challenges that process, practice and organizational routine studies share with other micro-sociological approaches (Collins, 1981) is how to deal with some of the ‘big issues’ or ‘grand challenges’ of our times. Examples of such issues include the nature and functioning of financial markets, the rise and fall of large institutional arrangements, the global travel of idea and ideologies, inequality, the bureaucracy and its failures, climate change and the future of the planet.

While work in this direction starts to emerge, current theoretical and methodological approaches appear to be generally ill-equipped to grasp social phenomena that are increasingly “complex, dynamic, distributed, mobile, transient, and unprecedented” (Feldman & Orlikowski, 2011: 1240). As a consequence  studies primarily concerned with understanding local situated action have been accused of ‘micro-isolationism’ (Seidl & Whittington, 2014) and therefore of little relevance outside academic circles. In contrast, studies describing large phenomenon by focusing on macro-level dynamics and processes are accused of lacking practice relevance as practitioners struggle to grasp the relevance of these abstract ideas to their local practices and everyday work. Thus, scholarly attempts of grasping large social phenomena through their local enactments are also closely related to what can be done about them. Continue reading

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Open Strategy Network: New Platform for Research on Open Strategy-making

OSN-LogoFueled by new digital technologies and by the perceived success of concepts such as ‘open innovation’, we can observe a growing interest in open forms of organizing more generally both among practitioners as well as among organization scholars (see also the wiki-based course on the matter). One such new field representing the interest in organizational openness is the realm of strategy research under the label of ‘Open Strategy’. The recently launched online community platform ‘Open Strategy Network‘ tries to connect and foster exchange among scholars interested in this emerging phenomenon.

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Open Tools (6): Open Thesis Project

The series Open Tools presents openly available tools supporting mostly qualitative SAP research. This post is about the project Offene Doktorarbeit (Open Thesis) by Christian Heise.


Christian Heise (Photo: CC-BY)

So far, this series presented interesting and openly available tools for SAP researchers. This time we peak into another research community and find a particularly inspirational use of open tools. In his dissertation on “Open Science”, political scientist Christian Heise used a number of open tools to make his research process as transparent as possible.

In 2013, Heise began to take notes on his ideas and the progress of his literature research in an openly accessible GoogleDocs document. Later on he experimented with the writing platform, but eventually migrated his project to the software development platform GitHub, where it is possible to trace every change he made to his document during the entire writing process. Besides his text, Heise also anonymized and uploaded his survey data from more than 1,000 respondents. After some legal battles with his examination office, Heise was allowed to license his dissertation drafts under a Creative Commons CC-BY-SA license, which allows others to take his material, to manipulate and redistribute it and even to use it for commercial purposes. Continue reading

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AOM Practice Theme Committee Practice Impact Award Winner: Professor Paula Jarzabkowski

Paula Jarzabkowski

Paula Jarzabkowski

Professor Paula Jarzabkowski has won Academy of Management PTC Practice Impact Award 2016: a prestigious and highly valued award that seeks to recognize and celebrate an outstanding scholar for her or his contribution to research and theory in practice based studies and overall impact on managerial and organizational practices. Previous winners include Herman Aguinis (Kelley School of Business), Steward R. Clegg (UTS),  Martha S. Feldman (UC Irvine) and Denise M. Rousseau (Carnegie Mellon University). Continue reading

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SAP PDW: A Practice-Based Perspective on Paradox: Study Strategic Tensions

Organizers: Eric Knight, University of Sydney, Rebecca Bednarek, Birkbeck University, Jane Lê, University of Sydney

Time: 10.15am-12.15pm

Date: Saturday, August 6, 2016 (Academy of Management Annual Meeting)

Location: Anaheim Hilton, Pacific B (2nd floor)

You are invited to join a SAP Professional Development Workshop (PDW) to be held at the AoM Annual Meeting in August 2016 to help advance scholarship at the intersection of strategy, practice, and paradox, a topic area of interest to both paradox and strategy-as-practice scholars. We bring together leading scholars in this area of research, as well as a number of emerging scholars. Thematically, this PDW responds to the recent emergence of paradox theory within organizational studies (including, recent special issues, standing working group at EGOS, and a forthcoming Oxford University Press Handbook). In particular, there have been a growing number of scholars adopting a social practice theory lens to explore strategic tensions and calls for more work in this space. Part 1 of this PDW will consist of a Panel Discussion offering different perspectives on paradox and practice from leading scholars in the field, followed by a brief Q&A. This will be done in an interactive fashion consisting of panel debate around two key questions. Part 2 will involve roundtables designed around key themes at the intersection of strategy-as-practice and paradox scholarship. This will offer participants the chance to select a theme that is salient to their own research and work with senior scholars with experience in that area.

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Announcing New Book on Leadership-as-practice

Joe Raelin, Knowles Chair, D’Amore-McKim School of Business,
Northeastern University

SAP members may be interested in a new book, just out from Routledge, called Leadership-as-Practice:  Theory and Application.  It is edited by member, Joe Raelin, and features content and authors very familiar with SAP theory and practice.  Here’s what former SAP chair, Richard Whittington, had to say about it:

“This book collects powerful statements from notable scholars in the emergent Leadership-as-Practice field, and confirms it as a rich alternative to the under-socialised accounts of leadership that prevail so widely. Leadership-as-Practice: Theory and Application will be an essential reference point for researchers in this and related fields.”

This book develops a new paradigm in the field of leadership studies, referred to as the “leadership-as-practice” (L-A-P) movement. Its essence is its conception of leadership as occurring as a practice rather than residing in the traits or behaviours of particular individuals. A practice is a coordinative effort among participants who choose through their own rules to achieve a distinctive outcome. It also tends to encompass routines as well as problem-solving or coping skills, often tacit, that are shared by a community. Accordingly, leadership-as-practice is less about what one person thinks or does and more about what people may accomplish together. It is thus concerned with how leadership emerges and unfolds through day-to-day experience. The social and material contingencies impacting the leadership constellation – the people who are effecting leadership at any given time – do not reside outside of leadership but are very much embedded within it. To find leadership, then, we must look to the practice within which it is occurring.

The leadership-as-practice approach resonates with a number of closely related traditions, such as collective, shared, distributed, and relational leadership, that converge on leadership processes. These approaches share a line of inquiry that acknowledges leadership as a social phenomenon. The new focus opens up a plethora of research opportunities encouraging the study of social processes beyond influence, such as intersubjective agency, shared sense-making, dialogue, and co-construction of responsibilities.

More information can be found on Amazon or on the Routledge site here:

Please consider attending Joe and colleagues’ SAP symposium on Leadership-as-Practice at the upcoming Academy of Management Annual Meeting in Anaheim

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