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This book comprises the second volume in the recently launched New Horizons in Managerial and Organizational Cognition book series. Volume 1 (Sund, Galavan, & Huff, 2016)…
This book comprises the second volume in the recently launched New Horizons in Managerial and Organizational Cognition book series. Volume 1 (Sund, Galavan, & Huff, 2016), addressed the topic of strategic uncertainty. This second volume comprises a collection of contributions that variously report new methodological developments in managerial and organizational cognition, reflect critically on those developments, and consider the challenges that have yet to be confronted in order to further advance this exciting and dynamic interdisciplinary field. Contextualizing within an overarching framework the various contributions selected for inclusion in the present volume, in this opening chapter we reflect more broadly on what we consider the most significant developments that have occurred over recent years and the most significant challenges that lie ahead.
This book on uncertainty comprises the initial volume in a series titled “New Horizons in Managerial and Organizational Cognition”. We asked Frances Milliken and Gerard P…
This book on uncertainty comprises the initial volume in a series titled “New Horizons in Managerial and Organizational Cognition”. We asked Frances Milliken and Gerard P. Hodgkinson, two well-known scholars who have made important contributions to our understanding of uncertainty to join us in this opening chapter to introduce this project. The brief bios found at the end of this volume cannot do justice to the broad range of their contributions, but our conversation gives a flavor of the kind of insights they have brought to managerial and organizational cognition (MOC). The editors thank them for helping launch the series with a decisive exploration of what defining uncertainty involves, how that might be done, why it is important, and how the task is changing. We were interested to discover that all five of us are currently involved in research that considers the nature and impact of uncertainty, and we hope that readers similarly find that paying attention to uncertainty contributes to their current projects. Working together, we can advance understanding of organizational settings and effective action, both for researchers and practitioners.
In light of the growing interest in neuroscience within the managerial and organizational cognition (MOC) scholarly domain at large, this chapter advances current…
In light of the growing interest in neuroscience within the managerial and organizational cognition (MOC) scholarly domain at large, this chapter advances current knowledge on core neuroscience methods. It does so by building on the theoretical analysis put forward by Healey and Hodgkinson (2014, 2015), and by offering a thorough – yet accessible – methodological framework for a better understanding of key cognitive and social neuroscience methods. Classifying neuroscience methods based on their degree of resolution, functionality, and anatomical focus, the chapter outlines their features, practicalities, advantages and disadvantages. Specifically, it focuses on functional magnetic resonance imaging, electroencephalography, magnetoencephalography, heart rate variability, and skin conductance response. Equipped with knowledge of these methods, researchers will be able to further their understanding of the potential synergies between management and neuroscience, to better appreciate and evaluate the value of neuroscience methods, and to look at new ways to frame old and new research questions in MOC. The chapter also builds bridges between researchers and practitioners by rebalancing the hype and hopes surrounding the use of neuroscience in management theory and practice.
Developments in the social neurosciences over the past two decades have rendered problematic the main knowledge elicitation techniques currently in use by strategy…
Developments in the social neurosciences over the past two decades have rendered problematic the main knowledge elicitation techniques currently in use by strategy researchers, as a basis for revealing actors’ mental representations of strategic knowledge. Extant elicitation techniques were advanced during an era when cognitive scientists and organizational researchers alike were preoccupied with the basic information of processing limitations of decision makers and means of addressing them, predicated on an outmoded conception of strategists as affect-free, cognitive misers. The need to adapt these techniques to enable the investigation of the emotional content and structure of actors’ mental representations is now a pressing priority for the advancement of theory, research, and practice pertaining to several interrelated areas of strategic management, from dynamic capabilities development, to upper echelons theory, to strategic consensus formation. Accordingly, in this chapter, we report the findings of two studies that investigated the feasibility of adapting the repertory grid, a robust method, widely known and well used in strategic management, for this purpose. Study 1 elicited a series of commonly mentioned strategic issues (the elements) from a sample of senior managers similar in composition to the sample recruited to the second study. Study 2 participants evaluated the elements elicited in Study 1 in relation to a series of researcher-supplied bipolar attributes (the constructs), based on the well-known affective circumplex model of human emotions. In line with expectations, a series of vector-based multivariate analyses revealed a number of interesting similarities and variations among participants in terms of the basic structure and emotional salience of the issues under consideration.
In response to recent calls to better understand the brain’s role in organizational behavior, we propose a series of theoretical tests to examine the question “can brains…
In response to recent calls to better understand the brain’s role in organizational behavior, we propose a series of theoretical tests to examine the question “can brains manage?” Our tests ask whether brains can manage without bodies and without extracranial resources, whether they can manage in social isolation, and whether brains are the ultimate controllers of emotional and cognitive aspects of organizational behavior. Our analysis shows that, to accomplish work-related tasks in organizations, the brain relies on and closely interfaces with the body, interpersonal and social dynamics, and cognitive and emotional processes that are distributed across persons and artifacts. The results of this “thought experiment” suggest that the brain is more appropriately conceived as a regulatory organ that integrates top-down (i.e., social, artifactual and environmental) and bottom-up (i.e., neural) influences on organizational behavior, rather than the sole cause of that behavior. Drawing on a socially situated perspective, our analysis develops a framework that connects brain, body and mind to social, cultural, and environmental forces, as significant components of complex emotional and cognitive organizational systems. We discuss the implications for the emerging field of organizational cognitive neuroscience and for conceptualizing the interaction between the brain, cognition and emotion in organizations.
Policy-capturing is an experimental technique potentially capable of providing powerful insights into the cognitive bases of work-related decision processes by revealing…
Policy-capturing is an experimental technique potentially capable of providing powerful insights into the cognitive bases of work-related decision processes by revealing actors’ “implicit” models of the problem at hand, thereby opening up the “black box” of managerial and organizational cognition. This chapter considers the strengths and weaknesses of policy-capturing vis-à-vis alternative approaches that seek to capture, in varying ways, the inner workings of people’s minds as they make decisions. It then outlines the critical issues that need to be addressed when designing policy-capturing studies and offers practical advice to would-be users concerning some of the common pitfalls of the technique and ways of avoiding them.
In this chapter we examine some possibilities of using computer simulation methods to model the interaction of affect and cognition in organizations, with a particular…
In this chapter we examine some possibilities of using computer simulation methods to model the interaction of affect and cognition in organizations, with a particular focus on agent-based modeling (ABM) techniques. Our chapter has two main aims. First, we take stock of methodological progress in this area, highlighting important developments in the modeling of affect and cognition in other fields, including psychology and economics. Second, we outline how ABM in particular can help to advance managerial and organizational cognition by building and testing theoretical models predicated on the interaction of affect and cognition. We argue that using ABM for this purpose can improve the level of specificity of cognitive and affective concepts and their interrelationships in organizational theories, yield more behaviorally plausible models of behavior in and of organizations, and deepen understanding of the generative behavioral mechanisms of multi-level organizational phenomena. We highlight possibilities for using ABM to model affect–cognition interactions in studies of mental models, collective cognition, diversity in work groups and teams, and organizational decision-making.
For organizational neuroscience to progress, it requires an overarching theoretical framework that locates neural processes appropriately within the wider context of…
For organizational neuroscience to progress, it requires an overarching theoretical framework that locates neural processes appropriately within the wider context of organizational cognitive activities. In this chapter, we argue the case for building such a framework on two foundations: (1) critical realism, and (2) socially situated cognition. Critical realism holds to the importance of identifying biophysical roots for organizational activity (including neurophysiological processes) while acknowledging the top-down influence of higher-level, emergent organizational phenomena such as routines and structures, thereby avoiding the trap of reductionism. Socially situated cognition connects the brain, body, and mind to social, cultural, and environmental forces, as significant components of complex organizational systems. By focusing on adaptive action as the primary explanandum, socially situated cognition posits that, although the brain plays a driving role in adaptive organizational activity, this activity also relies on the body, situational context, and cognitive processes that are distributed across organizational agents and artifacts. The value of the framework that we sketch out is twofold. First, it promises to help organizational neuroscience become more than an arena for validating basic neuroscience concepts, enabling organizational researchers to backfill into social neuroscience, by identifying unique relations between the brain and social organization. Second, it promises to build deeper connections between neuroscience and mainstream theories of organizational behavior, by advancing models of managerial and organizational cognition that are biologically informed and socially situated.
Our preoccupation with the Repertory Grid Technique has left little time and attention to the core ideas articulated in Kelly’s (1955) Theory of Personal Constructs. After…
Our preoccupation with the Repertory Grid Technique has left little time and attention to the core ideas articulated in Kelly’s (1955) Theory of Personal Constructs. After more than 20 years engaging with the method, I have (re)discovered his theorizing about man’s quest for knowing, to be the most insightful. This chapter shares my reflections/reflexions about the crucial role he placed on the notion of “anticipation.” I position this importance within the context of the challenges of our times and advocate that his “psychology of the unknown” is just as important today as it was 62 years ago.