2018 Irish Academy of Management (IAM) Annual Conference, University College Cork

03rd to 05th September, 2018

Conference Theme

Leading and Managing in 'Interesting Times': Learning for a Better Tomorrow

The theme of this year’s conference reflects the dynamic nature of the business landscape. In light of the social, political and economic turbulence of recent years, there is a need to re-examine how organisations have been affected and subsequently have reacted to these developments. More pressing for management scholars is the need to reflect on the role of ‘management’ against the backdrop of this unrest.

Certainly, the urgency of change affecting organisations requires a re-evaluation of what is expected of managers in contemporary firms. Relatedly, what managers themselves now expect of the organisation is a growing line of enquiry too. Indeed, how both employees and employers have reacted to changes in the work environment such as the diversification of employment contracts, have given rise to the emergence of a more individual-led association between both parties, often weakening the centrality of the manager in maintaining an effective employment relationship. However, the advent of new forms of organisations yields novel work arrangements thus creating different requirements for managers at the same time. It may be a case that management is evolving not devolving. Nonetheless, established thought and prevailing truths in management scholarship are being challenged by changes at macro, meso and micro levels. Consequently, it is time for academics to pause and reflect on the consequences of these developments for management.

Keynote Speakers

Professor Carol T. Kulik

Professor Carol T. Kulik is a Research Professor of Human Resource Management at the University of South Australia Business School, and a senior researcher within the Centre for Workplace Excellence (CWeX). Her research focuses on the effective management of workforce diversity and organisational fairness. Current projects are investigating strategies for closing the gender gap in salary negotiations, reducing stereotype threat among mature-age workers, and motivating organisations to invest in diversity management practice. Professor Kulik has been an Associate Editor at the Academy of Management Journal and the Journal of Management. She is in a 5-year leadership track at the Academy of Management (AOM); the track includes serving as AOM President in 2019.

The title of Professor Kulik’s keynote is Gender equity initiatives: Good intentions and unintended consequences.
Researching gender equity issues can be a dispiriting endeavour. For decades, researchers have documented the low representation of women in senior management roles and lamented the gender gap in salary. Today there may be new cause for optimism as more countries leverage their legislative and regulatory powers to motivate organizations to be more proactive and more innovative in their gender equity efforts. For example, Australia’s ASX Corporate Governance Council introduced reporting standards requiring organizations to disclose the number of women at senior levels on an “if not, why not?” basis. The reporting standards are widely credited with a spike in the number of women occupying board and senior management positions but research suggests that the standards may have equivocal – and ironic – long run effects on gender equity. The keynote will celebrate the good intentions evident in the activity surge around gender equity but will also highlight some unintended consequences. In particular, the keynote will encourage researchers to reflect on how we can best approach the study of gender equity to ensure that our research plays a positive role in public debates.

Vice Admiral Mark Mellett (DSM) is Chief of Staff of the Irish Defence Forces

He has forty two years’ service in the Irish Defence Forces and is the first naval officer to serve as Chief of Defence. He is a recognized change leader, contributing to ongoing transformation and positioning the Irish forces in a post-modern setting. Vice Admiral Mellett has extensive experience at home and abroad, including in Afghanistan and Lebanon, in combined and joint operational missions. He has service as a specialist Naval Diving Officer and Commander of three seagoing commands. Vice Admiral Mellett is a champion of internal and external organisational diversity. An advocate for better gender balance in the forces, he led the introduction of a Diversity and Inclusion Strategy in the Defence Forces (the first of its kind in the Irish Public Service). He is a strong advocate of external networks and partnership with other militaries, state bodies, research institutes and enterprise. He was co-founder of the Irish Maritime and Energy Resources Cluster, an innovation partnership between the military, academia, and enterprise, which received the Prime Minister’s Public Service Excellence Award in 2012. Holder of a Doctorate in Political Science and a Masters in Government and Public Policy, Admiral Mellett has a keen interest in research with a focus on European security, innovation, diversity and values-based leadership. He is currently an Adjunct Professor of Law at University College Cork.

The title of Vice Admiral Mellett’s keynote is ‘No man is an island, in pursuit of wisdom while leading in complexity’.
In telling his story Vice Admiral Mellett draws on the poem of John Donne ‘No man is an Island’ intimating that organizations, indeed states do not have all the answers. Using the macro level as a backdrop he paints a picture of accelerating complexity with implications for human, organizational and state security. In his keynote he advocates firstly for innovation and organizational diversity, leveraging internal and external networks. Secondly in arguing that values provide the bridge between understanding and wisdom, he reflects on the importance of institutionalised values interlinked with norms and principles (including inter alia, gender equality, cross cutting arrangements, diversity and inclusion) to enhance resilience and success. He comments on the negative impacts of egos and the debilitating effect of inappropriate silos. Finally he argues the key at every level is values based leadership which promotes greater autonomy, employee voice and risk management, acknowledging that mistakes are inevitable in complex organizations and are best viewed as ‘portals of discovery’.

In addition to the keynote speeches and paper presentations, the conference also featured:

– Doctoral Colloquium  chaired by Professor Matthias Beck and Professor Thomas Lawton.  The focus of this Doctoral Colloquium is on the role of publications and conference presentations during the PhD journey. Professors Beck and Lawton, along with Gail Sheppard, a final year PhD student at UCC, will discuss the role these activities have played for them and ask the audience to reflect on their own experiences in this regard.

– Meet the Editors session chaired by Professor Edel Conway (Human Resource Management Journal), with Professor David Collings (Journal of World Business), Professor Anthony McDonnell (Human Resource Management Journal), Professor James Cunningham (The Journal of Technology Transfer), Professor Thomas Lawton (Long Range Planning), and Dr. Michelle O’Sullivan (Irish Journal of Management), and Professor Michael Morley (European Management Review).

– Early Career Workshop  led by Dr. Christine Cross, IAM Vice Chair.   This short Early Career Workshop provides an opportunity for academics early in their careers to learn about some of the key skills necessary to advance their career in academia, grow their network, and to receive advice and guidance from our panel. The format will include an opportunity for small group discussion in a relaxed environment with the panel members.  Panel members include Professor Alma McCarthy (NUIG), and Professor Margaret Linehan (CIT).  The goals of this Workshop are to i) foster a sense of community among the cohort of early career researchers attending the IAM, ii) deepen participants’ understandings of the elements of successful academic and professional development, including the building of a research programme, pointers for journal writing, and negotiating a balance among institutional service, academic writing, and teaching.

– Research Funding Symposium: Navigating National & International Landscapes. Securing research funding is an increasingly important dimension of an academic career but for many management scholars their experience of the funding process has been frustrating and ultimately unsuccessful. Chaired by Dr. Sean Lucey, Research Manager in UCC College of Business & Law, and with contributions from Prof. Mary McCarthy (UCC) and Prof. Patrick Gunnigle (University of Limerick), this workshop seeks to provide useful advice on how to identify funding opportunities and how to craft successful funding applications. As a working lunch format delegates will have the opportunity to share their research experience as part of a panel discussion.

– IAM Work, Employment and Organisation Special Interest Group Symposium on gig working hosted by Professor Bill Roche (University College Dublin) . A panel of contributors will lead discussion and debate on the emergence, nature and effects of gig work. The areas covered will include the emergence, extent and growth of gig work, the employment status of gig workers, HR and gig work and the industrial relations of gig work. The symposium presenters are: James Duggan (UCC), Prof. Michael Doherty (Maynooth University), Prof. Anne Keegan (University College Dublin) and Dr. Michelle O Sullivan (University of Limerick).

– E-Leadership: The Impact of Technology on Leadership in Organisations symposium hosted by Professor Alma McCarthy.  It is now well established that advances in information technology have significant effects on how organisations are structured, how they function and how they are managed. Avolio et al. (2001) were the first to draw attention to how technology impacts leadership defining e-leadership as “a social influence process embedded in both proximal and distal contexts mediated AIT [advanced information technologies] that produce a change in attitudes, feelings, thinking, behaviour, and performance” (p. 107). Almost two decades later, and despite the exponential growth in the use of information technology in organisations, the lack of scholarly work on e-leadership presents a significant lacuna in the literature. To advance our understanding of e-leadership, this symposium brings together an international team of scholars to discuss how information technology impacts leadership in organisational settings with the objective of contributing towards a research agenda for the field. The symposium presenters are: Professor Alma McCarthy, National University of Ireland, Galway; Professor Monty Van Wart, California State University San Bernardino, USA, Professor XiaoHu Wang, City University of Hong Kong; and Professor Soonhee Kim, Korea Development Institute (KDI) School of Public Policy and Management, South Korea.