Collective Impact Virtual Salon

Since 2021 a group of management academics with diverse academic backgrounds and perspectives has gathered informally to talk about the impact and direction of their field. This gathering, the Collective Impact Virtual Salon, thrives on collaboration and dialogue on what would have the most meaning to the field. As the conversation continued two broad issues emerged: impact on research and impact on managerial and public policy practice. These posts stem from those discussions.

Please note, the Salon participants often have different points of view. Hence, each post reflects the views of the author(s) and not the Salon as a whole. We invite you to read, share, and leave your comments and feedback. Read more about why a Salon here.

Wharton Magazine talked with Lori Rosenkopf and Dan Levinthal as part of these discussions to consider how academic research can reach a broader group of scholars, organizational leaders, and policy makers.  Read the article here.

Collective Impact Posts

Please note that comments are moderated and will appear within 1-2 business days.

The Art of Translating Current Events into Research

by Jerry Davis In a previous post I described the benefits of using the real world to source research topics, and how seasoned scholars like Mayer Zald had the ability to read the newspaper and have insightful takes that could spark a study – maybe even a dissertation.   The world is an endless source of researchable topics ...Read More

Mapping the Murky Waters: The Promise of Integrative Experiment Design

by Abdullah Almaatouq (Guest Author) My PhD journey began with a clear vision: to unravel the interplay between social network structures and their collective outcomes. I was particularly interested in the collective intelligence arising in those structures. With several projects already underway on this topic, I felt prepared. Perhaps optimistically, or some might think naively, I ...Read More

The Impact from Engaging Stakeholder Voice

by Rocki-Lee DeWitt (Guest Author) By virtue of my rank and choice of where to work, I am privileged to be an academic the way I think best fits the academic me.  I focus my effort on delivering benefits for business owners. Please do not jump to the conclusion that this type of impact is one more ...Read More

Impact, Attention & The Division of Labor

by Tim Simcoe (Guest Author) This post is in response to Olav Sorenson’s Want Your Research To Have Impact? Consider These Three Questions. In an earlier contribution to this salon, Olav Sorenson proposed that “impactful” research provides a basis for believing that a feasible action will produce meaningful change in some individual or organizational objective. I like ...Read More

On the Folly of Rewarding Production While Hoping For Quality: Reconsidering How Peer Review Is Essential For Collective Impact

by Matthew A. Cronin (Guest Author) Peer review is an essential part of the “collective” in creating collective impact. It is what makes management science science. In a time when desirable findings and folk wisdom can be easily dressed up using pseudoscience, unsound tests, confirmatory hypothesis testing, or a host of other specious methods, getting an ...Read More

Must Academic Research Be Relevant?

by Mark Zbaracki (Guest Author) The questions of impact raised here recalled Jim March’s longstanding claim: “I am not now, nor have I ever been, relevant” (March 2006, p. 83). In The Roots, Rituals, and Rhetorics of Change, he and Mie Augier point out that our standard measures of relevance...Read More

What is Collective Impact, Really?

by Anita McGahan To answer, “what is collective impact, really?,” first begs the question, “How do we have impact in the field of management and organizations?,” which then raises, “How does that impact emerge collectively?”   Our Collective Impact conversations got me thinking about both. So how do we have impact?  ...Read More

Dissertation Canvas

by Phanish Puranam I have no doubt that the hardest part, by far, of the Ph.D. student’s journey is finding a thesis topic, and then a cast of characters who are enthusiastic enough about the topic to serve as a thesis committee. How do you select a suitable dissertation topic?...Read More

Seize the Opportunity to Research the Collective Impact of ESG Factors

by Witold Henisz (Guest Author) For many years, despite increasing globalization of the economy and business education, doctoral students and junior scholars were advised not to study international topics or international samples. Why? Because such studies were perceived to have poor quality or suspect data and reviewers and editors were...Read More

Teaching Generalizability to Both Undergraduate and Doctoral Students

by Lori Rosenkopf Determining how and when empirical results are generalizable is critical to increase the impact of academic research. It is also a valuable thinking skill for non-academics. Hence, we need to build this skill into our educational offerings at all levels. Since doctoral students are academics in training,...Read More

Novelty is Overrated

by Connie Helfat Murray Davis’ classic 1971 article “That’s Interesting!” asserts that a theory must be interesting to be considered great. He goes on to say that all interesting theories challenge routinely held assumptions. By implication, counterintuitive theories, which by their definition deviate from common assumptions, are far more likely...Read More

Who Is A Dissertation For?

by Jerry Davis Is there an audience for academic research? While it may seem an obvious yes who is that audience? Of all the things I neglected to learn in graduate school, this one took the longest to address. Recognizing that someone might read, and better yet make a decision...Read More

Response to “From Quasi-Replication to Generalization”

by Phanish Puranam Lori and Dan's post "From Quasi-Replication to Generalization: Making 'Basis Variables' Visible" gives us a nice way to think about generalization in terms of “basis variables”.  I’d like to extend their thought with a complementary way of thinking about generalization using machine learning (ML) techniques. Generalization can...Read More

From Quasi-Replication to Generalization: Making “Basis Variables” Visible

by Lori Rosenkopf and Dan Levinthal  A persistent challenge in social science research is understanding whether and when empirical results generalize beyond a specific study’s sample or context. In 2016, Rich Bettis, Connie Helfat and Myles Shaver produced a special issue of Strategic Management Journal containing several “quasi-replications” which examined...Read More

Why A “Salon”?

by Lori Rosenkopf During the past decade, increasing administrative responsibilities forced me to grapple with how managerial research might be made more impactful for students, practitioners and policy-makers.  My newly-constrained research attention turned toward the idea of redirecting and integrating our field's research trajectories. I found myself questioning not only...Read More