PhD (Management) [University of Technology, Sydney]
- The Phenomenology of Project Based Organizing.
Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology) - Honours [University of New South Wales]
- Cognitive Behavioural Barriers to the Implementation of Food Safety Standards.
Current Visiting Appointments and External roles
2012-Current: Sydney University, Australia. (Visiting Professor)
2014-2017: Lancaster University, UK. (External Examiner: MSc. programmes)
Business School Research Ethics Convenor
Research and Knowledge Exchange Committee
Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (http://www.thersa.org/about-us)
Chair (outgoing) The Practice Theme Committee of the Academy of Management (Learn more by clicking here)
Board Member and Academic Advisor: The International Association for Contract and Commercial Management (www.iaccm.com)
While many people do one thing, I tend to do the opposite. Born and raised in Sydney, Australia I moved to the UK in 2011, and could not believe the wonderful welcome I received from Londoners as I was driving to London from Heathrow, with bon fires burning and people trying to give me really cheap plasma screens and Nike shoes. Despite the "warmth" of Londoners I decided to join Newcastle University on September 1, 2011. I love Newcastle and it even has a tiny version of the Sydney Harbour Bridge to make me feel at home.
How come we have all sorts of governance systems, management tools, project and programme close out reports, learning circles and lessons learned session available to us, yet our projects still are more likely to fail than succeeed? This is quite perculiar, don't you think? These are the sorts of issues I seek to address. My research primarily focuses on the strategic execution of mega-projects, particularly those delivered through public and private partnerships; the design of complex governance mechanisms aimed at dealing with economic, social and ecological problems; and more generally relational power in organizational life (for example the relational qualities of creativity, ideas, and emotions in personal and organizational projects). In a separate stream of research I like to explore the debates, value and relevance of organization and management theory and research.
Esteem and Impact
In 2011 I was elected Chair of the Academy of Management's Practice Theme Committee (PTC), a strategic leadership committee of the Academy of Management, the largest management association in the world. More recently I was appointed Academic Advisor and ex officio-Board member of the International Association of Contract and Commercial Management (www.iaccm.com).
I have co-authored several highly cited papers in a range of journals including Organization Science (FT top 45; 4*), Organization Studies (FT top 45; 4), Journal of Business Ethics (FT top 45; 3); Business History (4); Journal of Management Inquiry (3); Management Learning (3), International Journal of Project Management (2) amongst others. I am a reviewer for the ESRC (international projects) as well as for several major journals and conferences.
My work on future perfect strategy is recommended by Business UK as a strategic design tool for change and recently appeared in an Oxford University study conducted by Professor Bent Flyvbjerg as 3rd in the top 10 seminal works in mega-projects. Our IJPM paper (van Marrewijk et al) was listed as one of the most highly cited papers published since 2008. I have also been recipient of a number of awards including the Emerald Science Citation of Excellence in 2010 (with my colleagues Stewart Clegg and Kjersti Bjorkeng). I am the co-author of Sage’s critically acclaimed bestselling textbook Management and Organizations: An Introduction to Theory and Practice, Sage: London, and my latest publication is the (2014) Handbook of Managerial and Organizational Innovation. Edward-Elgar. I was also a contributing author and researcher for the OECD Report on Innovation Strategy.
In 2013 I was proud to be elected as a Fellow of the RSA (The Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce). The RSA was founded in 1754, and has a wealth of notable achievements and Fellows in its 250-year history including Charles Dickens, Adam Smith, Benjamin Franklin, Karl Marx, William Hogarth, Nelson Mandela, Sir Frank Whittle and Stephen Hawking. Being elected an RSA Fellow depends on having achieved a contribution to society in a cultural or arts-related sphere. RSA is an organisation committed to finding innovative practical solutions to today’s social challenges. Through its ideas, research and Fellowship it seeks to understand and enhance human capability to close the gap between today’s reality and people’s hopes for a better world.
I work with large and SMEs globally on dealing with and understanding complex strategic problems. I have coached teams on strategy using design thinking; my teams have won the Boston Consulting Group Strategy Competition, and most recently won the "innovative idea" award at the Sustainability Challenge run by Tesco, Proctor & Gamble and Santander.
Academy of Management
Strategic Management Society
Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts
1. Strategic Turning Points: The human experience of key moments of transformation (both positive and negative) as strategic devices in change projects (with John Sillince and Ben Golant), trust forming and transition ritual in strategic projects (with Frank Mueller), and projects of ideas, innovation and creativity (Arne Carlsen and Erlend Dehlin).
2. The phenomenology of project based organizing (with Alfons van Marrewijk, Sierk Ybema)
3. Power-Relational Strategies of emotions in organizational life - (with Stewart Clegg and Ace Simpson)
4. Projects of social transformations (with colleagues from Newcastle U., Stanford U., Norwegian Business School, Exeter...)
If you were to think about all the projects your organisation pursues, how many are central to your strategic intentions? How central are your projects in innovating what you do and how you do it? Of those that are strategically imperative, how well do they help you achieve those imperatives? How are projects governed to enable the tensions between control, prediction and planning with the need for improvisation, adaptation and transformations? Importantly, how well does your organisation understand the power and social relations inherent and endemic in project based organising? These are just some of the questions I seek to investigate, interrogate and explore through my research.
My research focuses on two loosely connected but inter-related areas: 1) emergent strategy in mega-projects and how these projects lead to oganisational and social innovation; and 2) the governance mechanisms organisations put into place to foster hope achievement (or, what I call future perfect strategy). All my work in these areas are underpinned by pragmatic phenomenology (i.e. Schutz, Garfinkle, Luckmann, Dreyfus).
If you want to do a PhD specifically in my area (see below), I would love to have a chat with you. Please be aware I will not supervise anyone outside my specific area of interest. Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on 0191 208 1710
2012 - Dr Ace Simpson (Organizing Compassion)
2013 - Dr. Christopher Biesenthal (Projects as pragmatic tools)
2010 - Dr. Nursen Seracoglu (Matrix Project Organizations)
Lindi Roelofse (Improvisation, strategy and trust)
- mega-projects and project governance (especially public/private collaboration)
- managerial and organizational innovation and creativity
- wicked problems
- creating project legacy
- Pragmatic philosophy
- Phenomenological Psychology
- Alfred Schutz, Hubert Dreyfus and the work of Richard Sennett