Call for papers to EGOS on The Role of Organizing in Extreme Contexts

Please find a Call for papers to the EGOS sub-theme on “The Role of Organizing in Extreme Contexts”.

A look at last week’s headlines suggests that the extreme might become the new normal: Dorian’s ravaging of the Bahamas and the Amazon on fire, failing peace talks between Trump’s administration and the Taliban, fractious infighting in “the mother of all parliaments” and likelihood of a no deal Brexit, and the resurgence of a powerful anti-gay lobby in Eastern Europe and elsewhere are but the latest in a series of unsettling changes: in weather patterns, in local and global politics, in the “othering” of LGBTQI+ and ethnic minorities.

This sub-theme is designed to explore our own place and work in such contexts. We hope that you will consider contributing to the theme and that will join us in advancing conversations on the role and importance of organizing in extreme contexts. For your convenience, we attach the text and the link below.

Link to sub-theme:

The sub-theme is the first of four sub-themes arranged within the “Organizing in and for Extreme Contexts” Standing Working Group ( Take the opportunity and join the conversation from the start!

Hope to see you in Hamburg!

/Markus Hällgren, Kathleen Sutcliffe & Mark de Rond If you have any questions, please email

WORKSHOP: Collective Action in Crisis?

Organized by Ignasi Marti, Martin Kornberger, Joep Cornelissen, Corinna Frey-Heger, Marian Gatzweiler& Renate Meyer

Date: May 16 & 17 2019 

Time: Thursday 16 12noon – Friday 17 3pm

Location:Institute of Social Innovation, ESADE, Barcelona 

Context:The problem of the organization and governance of collective action surfaces as particularly apparent in crisis situations such as in war zones or the management of large-scale humanitarian emergencies. Such contexts often evade clear-cut classification and present challenges in terms of polycentric governance, distributed decision-making and collective sensemaking for the actors involved. The instability of these settings, and the pressing need for collaboration amongst actors that do not necessarily share a common history, tradition or identity make the organization and governance of collective action particularly challenging.  

Aim: With this workshop we want to investigate how collective action across a network of diverse actors is accomplished in such situations of crisis. Our focal question is: how can a collective of actors organize their capacity to act and make decisions in situations of crisis? 

Conceptual orientation:The project explores collective action as form of collaboration and coordination beyond the well-worn modes of the state, market and hierarchy. With the concept of collective action we zoom in on how heterogeneous networks of actors that transcend organizational and institutional boundaries address crisis situations. Key questions include how the collective develops a sense of purpose and identity, a shared strategic direction, and sustains coherence in action. We seek to explore the institutional, organizational and strategic forces that enable and/or constrain effective collective action and its governance. 

With crisis we delimit the empirical setting that we are interested in. We are inspired by the original meaning of the Greek word ‘crisis’ – which derives from krínein– meaning to decide and to incise: the crisis is the moment of decision, a radical interruption of temporality resulting in a loss of orientation that forces a decision which divides the flow of events into a before and after. In this sense, crisis situations are not only low-probability, high-impact events such as disasters, fires, or earthquakes; with the focus on crisis as decision-making under extreme contingency we also include empirical contexts addressing organizing under high uncertainty, in extreme contexts, or grand challenges.   

Possible questions we want to pursue include:

  • Management practices: what are the routines, practices, technologies, plans, etc. through which crisis situation are managed? 
  • Decision-making: How does decision-making within a network of actors sustain collective action during situations of crisis?
  • Polycentricity: How is coordination made possible under conditions of polycentric governance? 
  • Sensemaking: How do interfaces and technologies harness cognition distributed across networks? 
  • Performance: How is performance across the network evaluated, given that different actors might have different evaluative practices and principles? 
  • Power: How are conflicts (between actors etc.) resolved? What are consequences (intended and unintended) of collective action? 

The event: The workshop aims to provide a space for conceptual and empirical contributions as well as reflections on methods. The workshop is developmental and welcomes papers as well as work in progress. 

We have planned a follow up workshop in Rotterdam in autumn 2019 to continue the conversation and, based on progress in Barcelona, work collectively towards a joint publication (such as a special issue or edited volume). Participation in both workshops is desirable but not mandatory. 

Organizers: The workshop is a joint venture between 

  • Corinna Frey-Heger, Assistant Professor Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University  
  • Ignasi Marti, Professor Institute of Social Innovation, ESADE, Barcelona
  • Joep Cornelissen,Professor Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University  
  • Marian Gatzweiler, Early Career Fellow University of Edinburgh Business School 
  • Martin Kornberger, Professor EM Lyon, Visiting professor WU Wien and University of Edinburgh Business School 
  • Renate Meyer, Professor WU Wien and CBS

For more information please contact Martin Kornberger kornberger@em-lyon.comor Ignasi Marti



12-1pm                                Welcome & introduction Ignasi Marti & Martin Kornberger   

1-2pm                                  Marc Ventresca Organizing collective capacity in crisis:  Analytic imageries from                                                                          commons governance and action fields

2.15-3.15pm    Arjen Boin, Collective action in the face of crisis: Lessons from Hurricane Katrina

3.30-4.30pm    Daniel Geiger, Crafting Space: The Role of Spatial Practices in Managing Refugee                                                                       Camps

4.30-5.30pm    Open discussion: developing a research agenda

                                           Drinks provided   


9-10am                                 Madeleine Rauch, Emotions, Framing, and Grand Challenges: How do individuals cope                                                             with emotional stress when working in extreme contexts?

10.15.-11.15amJohn Amis, Responding to the Homeless Crisis: Personal Drivers of Collective Action

11.30-12.30     Juliane Reinecke, title TBC 

12.30-1.30       Open discussion: developing a research agenda

                                           Conclusion of event 

                                           Fingerfood provided  


The track address a major gap in our understanding – organising for resilience in contexts that are abnormal, exceptional, or extreme. This can involve the processes of anticipating, preparing for, responding to and learning from disruptive events in order to survive and prosper.

Our specific focus is on in extreme contexts where risks of severe physical, psychological harm or material consequences threaten the viability of an organisation and the safety and well-being of its organisational members. We will explore the theoretical, methodological and practical dimensions of the topic.

Track organizers: Professor David Denyer (Cranfield University); Professor Markus Hällgren (Umeå university); Professor Martina Linnenluecke (Macquarie University); Doctor Elmar Kutsch (Cranfield University); Dr Mark Hall (Birmingham University); Doctor Hugo Marynissen (Antwerp Management School)

The EGOS SWG on Organizing in and for extreme contexts is accepted!

We just received the happy news that the EGOS Standing Working Group on “Organizing in and for Extreme Contexts” was accepted! Starting in 2020, there will be (at least) four consecutive years with themes related to Extreme contexts! There was 99 supporters that responded to the request of support of the SWG. Without you this could not have happened! Thank you so much for the support to develop the research agenda even further! Hope to see you at a (EGOS) conference!! THANK YOU!!

Markus (Hällgren) on behalf of the organizing team; Anja Danner-Schröder, Mark de Rond, Samer Faraj, Daniel Geiger, Linda Rouleau, Kathleen Sutcliffe

SPECIAL ISSUE: Maynard et al – Teamwork in extreme environments: Lessons, challenges, and opportunities

Special issue in Journal of Organizational Behavior!
Given the numerous calls for researchers to examine teams in
the wild to better understand the impact of context on team
dynamics and performance, there has been increased consid-
eration of teams operating within extreme environments. As
such, this special issue is focused on better understanding
the factors that shape teamwork in extreme environments so
that the lessons learned can be leveraged within extreme as
well as in other team contexts as appropriate. To this end,
we present five exemplar papers that span disciplines, address
diverse research questions in unique samples, and employ var-
ied methodologies and research designs. Each of these papers
not only contributes new insights to the understanding of
teams in extreme environments (i.e., lessons) but also high-
lights the challenges that exist in conducting research in such
contexts and sets the stage for additional opportunities within
the extreme team literature moving forward.

Institutions in troubled times and places

A sub-plenary related to “institutional times and places” including Renate Meyer, Mark de Rond, Charlotte Karam and Marc Ventresca on various institutions and insights gained from Extreme contexts. The room was absolutely packed! Important insights related to theorizing and doing research in i.e. war situations.


EGOS track on Organization and Time

Extreme contexts are often operating under time pressure. Such issues could be interesting to explore in the EGOS Standing Working Group on Organization and Time.

Contemporary organizations operate increasingly according to a logic of speed and instantaneity, while at the same time increasing their temporal spans to either draw upon their histories or to cope with distant future challenges (Slawinski & Bansal, 2012; Schultz & Hernes, 2013). Within widely varying “temporal depths” (Bluedorn, 2002), different organizational actors carve out wide combinations of temporal structures (Adam, 1998; Ancona et al., 2001) and trajectories (Lawrence et al., 2001) that shape the organizations as well as their relationships (Reinecke & Ansari, 2016). Recent works in organization studies have begun the search for ways to analytically and empirically handle the temporal complexity that organizational actors face (Hussenot & Missonier, 2016). This Standing Working Group (SWG) 01 aims to extend this work through joint inquiry.

Time has been a preoccupation in organizational research since its inception, where a host of works have focused on the construction of time as linear and chronological. Others have construed time more as the background against which organizational processes take place. Informed by economics, sociology, and partly psychology, such views are prevalent in organization studies.

During the last decade or two, however, works have emerged that offer a supplementary take on time, suggesting more situated, event-based, on-going, multiple, and enacted conceptions of time (Orlikowski & Yates, 2002; Hernes, 2014). These works herald a view of time that opens multiple possibilities for studying the actual workings of time in organizational life. In particular, they invite combining perspectives across levels, going from the situated level of day-to-day actions to the level of society via that of organizations or institutions (Granqvist & Gustafsson, 2016; Rowell et al., 2016).

This SWG aims at encouraging scholars to pursue novel and exciting studies of the role of time, moving beyond the current reification of “clock time” to understand time as a social construct that affects all aspects of organizations and organizing. In particular, SWG 01 aims to explore and advance research on organization and time by:

  • Giving scholars the possibility to review their current work through various temporal lenses

  • Extending current theories on time and organization to enable richer explanations of the present, past, and future dynamics in organizations

  • Using temporal views to critique, expend, recast or replace theories of organizational phenomena, such as innovation, identity, change, communication, etc.

  • Exploring how temporal views may better inform current phenomena in business, industry and society, such as digital transformation, values-based businesses, and other grand challenges

  • Integrating discussions across variety of approaches to studying organizational temporalities, such as organizational history or temporary organizations in order to identify and build more comprehensive theoretical frameworks

  • Deepening our knowledge of methodological and analytical approaches to temporal research

  • Extending knowledge about time and organization(s) through the various networks of the scholars involved, notably through published research and other conferences

AoM: ‘Not another survey’: Unconventional methodology in organization and management research

Saturday 11 August 2018, 10.15 to 12.45,

Sheraton Grand Chicago, Chicago Ballroom X: sponsoring Divisions: RM, OMT

Are you interested in using novel methodologies in your research?  Or do you think that journal editors will reject your papers if you ‘break the rules’?

This PDW has three aims:

  1. to assess the case for using unconventional methodologies
  2. to explore a range of non-traditional approaches
  3. to advise researchers planning to use unconventional methods.

Most researchers stick to two or three traditional methods for data collection, like surveys and interviews.  Is novelty dangerous?  Using the same old methods runs the risk of generating the same old findings.  The formulaic, template-based nature of our publications is attracting criticism.  There have been calls for more diverse, ‘polymorphic’ approaches.  Also, our participants see our methods as boring, and we have accounts of ‘survey fatigue’.

Who should attend?  This Workshop is designed for both new and experienced researchers who want to explore fresh possibilities in methodology, as well as researchers who are actively engaged in developing non-traditional approaches to their work.  We will explore unconventional research settings, data sources, designs, and data collection methods:

radio programme archives: Laurie Cohen (Nottingham U) and Joanne Duberley (Birmingham U)

innovation in unobtrusive methods: Andrew Knight (Washington U in St Louis)

using fiction, and research in extreme contexts: David Buchanan (Cranfield U)

netnography: Manuela Nocker (Essex U)

experiments in institutional theory: Alex Bitektine (HEC Montreal)

inter-organizational ethnography: Olivier Berthod (Jacobs U Bremen)

participant-led video diaries: David Buchanan (Cranfield U)

We have designed a participative ‘presentation – buzz group – plenary’ format, ending with a Q&A panel session.  There are three take-aways:

  1. you will learn about the uses, strengths and limitations of innovative methodologies, and how these can be adapted for use in your own research
  2. you will learn how journal editors judge research using unconventional methodology
  3. based on editorial advice, you will find out how best to present work relying on unconventional methods

There is no preregistration required for this Workshop.

We look forward to seeing you in Chicago in August!

For further information about this workshop, contact the organizers:

David Buchanan

Olivier Berthod 

Andrew Knight