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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2006

Anne M. Walsh and Susan C. Borkowski

This national study of 540 executives in the health industry was designed to examine organizational factors which influenced participation of male and female executives in…

Abstract

Purpose

This national study of 540 executives in the health industry was designed to examine organizational factors which influenced participation of male and female executives in their professional associations. Instrumental and expressive factors which influenced association membership were also analyzed by gender to assess preferences for specific membership benefits.

Design/methodology/approach

Survey methodology was used in this study with questionnaires mailed to 1,680 executives in the US resulting in a response rate of 32.1 percent. Dreher and Ash's mentoring scale was used to analyze preference for specific instrumental and expressive benefits.

Findings

Dues posed an organizational barrier to participation in a professional association for female executives. Gender differences also influenced the type of instrumental and expressive benefits desired by executives.

Research limitations/implications

Future studies should explore multiple association relationships to assess if there are structural or professional factors which contribute to particular network constellations.

Originality/value

Few studies focused on organizational barriers or key benefits that may affect participation in professional associations.

Details

Women in Management Review, vol. 21 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0964-9425

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Book part
Publication date: 26 June 2006

Fiona Anderson-Gough, Christopher Grey and Keith Robson

Drawing upon an eight-year-long study of two of the global accounting firms, this chapter suggests that a key aspect of professionalism is networking. Networking within…

Abstract

Drawing upon an eight-year-long study of two of the global accounting firms, this chapter suggests that a key aspect of professionalism is networking. Networking within these firms is crucial to achieving and demonstrating professional competence and to career advancement. It involves sophisticated forms of social practice and permeates a range of organizational processes. It is argued that networking also implies and potentially creates and regulates a particular kind of identity, namely that of the networked self or, more specifically, the networked professional.

Details

Professional Service Firms
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-76231-302-0

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Book part
Publication date: 3 June 2008

H. Frank Cervone

University libraries have traditionally been the primary caretaker of scholarly resources. However, as electronic modes of information delivery replace print materials…

Abstract

University libraries have traditionally been the primary caretaker of scholarly resources. However, as electronic modes of information delivery replace print materials, expectations of academic libraries have evolved rapidly. In this environment, academic libraries need to be adaptable organizations. Librarianship, though, is deeply rooted in strong values and beliefs which inherently limit receptivity to change and innovation, but these constraints are not absolute. Social network research indicates that professional advice networks play a significant role in how one thinks about and performs work and that individual perspectives are broadened when diverse input is received. Based on social network analysis methods, this study explored the relationship between individual receptivity to innovation and the composition of a person's professional advice network through a purposive sample of academic librarians in Illinois. The group completed a survey that explored two dimensions: (1) the nature of relationships within their professional advice network and (2) the individual's personal receptivity to innovation. Analysis of the nature of relationships within the professional advice networks was based on a combination of quantitative and qualitative techniques, in contrast to the analysis of the respondents’ receptivity to innovation which was based on quantitative measures. Based on the information from the 440 respondents, the results of this research indicate that there is a relationship between the size of the professional advice networks and individual's receptivity to innovation, but additional aspects of the professional advice network may play a role in an individual's overall receptivity to innovation.

Details

Advances in Library Administration and Organization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-7623-1488-1

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Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Jacalyn M. Griffen and Ronald E. Hallett

The school counselor can reduce barriers to college access for students in underserved communities but there is a lack of focused support and professional development…

Abstract

Purpose

The school counselor can reduce barriers to college access for students in underserved communities but there is a lack of focused support and professional development resources to assist them with this task. The purpose of this paper is to gain insight into how a collaborative partnership reframed professional development to increase counselors’ capacities and enrich their role in addressing educational inequities in a local context.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors employed an action-oriented qualitative case study through the lens of social justice to critically consider how urban school counselors took action to address local educational inequities in the postsecondary process. Data were collected over a ten month period and consisted of semi-structured interviews, 17 hours of meeting transcriptions, meeting notes, field observations, numerous field notes, researcher reflections, weekly e-mail correspondence, electronic data, counselor demographic surveys, and document analysis.

Findings

The inter-agency networked learning community model encouraged the school counselors to take ownership for their professional development, starting small led to greater collaboration, the counselors engaged in collective learning and counselors took a responsibility for the broader school community.

Research limitations/implications

Inter-agency partnerships can address social inequities and initiate transformative change but further research is needed to explore how to address what happens as actors move in and/or out of the partnership. Acknowledging and validating the experience of the school counselors empowered them to take risks, invite new ideas, and adapt the new idea to their local school site. Reframing professional development began to transform how the counselors were viewed by the broader school community. Further research is needed to explore how educational systems can be empowered to engage in conversations to embrace change.

Social implications

This study illustrated the transformative power of school counselors in building community, collaborating, and constructing bridges between each other, school administrators, and postsecondary researchers. Unless the current devaluing of school counselors shifts, the benefits associated with networked collaborative partnerships will likely go unrealized. We call on policymakers to reconsider the role of school counselors and call on them to ensure these positions are mandatory in all K-12 schools.

Originality/value

This study demonstrated how an inter-organizational collaboration between a university and a K-12 local education agency initiated transformative change. The collective action of the network equipped counselors with tools to build community with each other, within their individual school sites, and in the local community. Many studies provide models regarding what school counselors should do but few explore how to empower them to use the models to enact change. The action-inquiry approach provided an opportunity to explore how urban school counselors experienced and understood the process of engaging in professional development designed to help them try something new in addressing educational inequities in underserved communities.

Details

Journal of Professional Capital and Community, vol. 2 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-9548

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Article
Publication date: 13 February 2019

Stephen Anderson, Caroline Manion, Mary Drinkwater, Rupen Chande and Wesley Galt

The purpose of this paper is to review the findings from a study of teacher professional learning networks in Kenya. Specific areas of focus included network

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to review the findings from a study of teacher professional learning networks in Kenya. Specific areas of focus included network participation, network activities, network leadership, and professional impact on network members and their schools.

Design/methodology/approach

The research was grounded in the literature on education networks and teacher learning. The research employed a qualitative design and was implemented from September 2015–March 2017, including three two-week field trips to Kenya. Data included network records, 83 personal interviews, 4 focus group interviews, 19 observations of network meetings, and classroom observation of network and non-network teachers in 12 schools.

Findings

Network participation had positive effects on teachers’ sense of professionalism and commitment to teaching and on their attitudes toward ongoing professional learning and improvement in student learning. Teachers also highlighted network benefits for learning to use new teaching strategies and materials, responding to student misbehavior and misunderstanding, and lesson preparation.

Research limitations/implications

Research constraints did not permit longitudinal investigation of network activities and outcomes.

Practical implications

The paper identifies challenges and potential focuses for strengthening the learning potential of network activities, network leadership, and the links between network activity and school improvement.

Originality/value

Prior research has investigated education networks mostly in North American and similar high income settings. This paper highlights the benefits and challenges for networks as a strategy for continuous teacher development in a low income low resource capacity context.

Details

Journal of Professional Capital and Community, vol. 4 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-9548

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Article
Publication date: 5 October 2015

Renuka Hodigere and Diana Bilimoria

The purpose of this study is to examine the importance of human capital and professional networks for women’s and men’s appointment to the boards of directors of public…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine the importance of human capital and professional networks for women’s and men’s appointment to the boards of directors of public companies. The study provides an in-depth analysis of how human capital and professional networks contribute to women’s as compared with men’s odds of corporate board membership.

Design/methodology/approach

The study analyzes the human capital and professional networks of 494 male and female corporate outside (non-executive) directors appointed between 2005 and 2010 to the boards of US public companies listed in the Standard & Poor’s 500 index. Human capital was measured as director age, education and professional experience (function and role). Professional network variables measured included composition of professional network, network centrality, constraint and cohesion.

Findings

The study’s findings reveal that the characteristics that impact the appointment of women as outside directors to public company boards differ from those of men. Relative to men, certain professions such as government relations and education improve the odds of appointment of women to corporate boards, while age lowers women’s odds. The number of network ties and the degree of network cohesion were also significant in predicting the likelihood of female board appointment to public corporations relative to men’s odds. The final model was able to predict female board membership correctly only in 28 per cent of the cases, while male board membership was predicted in 89 per cent of the cases, suggesting that factors other than human capital and professional networks (e.g. their gender) impact women’s appointment to corporate boards.

Originality/value

To the authors ' knowledge, this study is the first to comprehensively examine the professional network components of female and male directors along with their human capital in the analysis of their prospects for board appointment. The conceptualization of professional networks as well the depth of quantitative analysis of the network components of the study advance the extant literature on the composition of corporate boards.

Details

Gender in Management: An International Journal, vol. 30 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-2413

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Article
Publication date: 25 March 2019

Bieke Schreurs, Antoine Van den Beemt, Nienke Moolenaar and Maarten De Laat

This paper aims to investigate the extent professionals from the vocational sector are networked individuals. The authors explore how professionals use their personal…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate the extent professionals from the vocational sector are networked individuals. The authors explore how professionals use their personal networks to engage in a wide variety of learning activities and examine what social mechanisms influence professionals’ agency to form personal informal learning networks.

Design/methodology/approach

This study applied a mixed-method approach to data collection. Social network data were gathered among school professionals working in the vocational sector. Ego-network analysis was performed. A total of 24 in-depth, semi-structured, qualitative interviews were analyzed.

Findings

This study found that networked individualism is not represented to its full potential in the vocational sector. However, it is important to form informal learning ties with different stakeholders because all types of informal learning ties serve different learning purposes. The extent to which social mechanisms (i.e. proximity, trust, level of expertise and homophily) influence professionals’ agency to form informal learning ties differs depending on the stakeholder with whom the informal learning ties are formed.

Research limitations/implications

This study excludes the investigation of social mechanisms that shape learning through more impersonal virtual learning resources, such as social media or expert forums. Moreover, the authors only included individual- and dyadic-level social mechanisms.

Practical implications

By investigating the social mechanisms that shape informal learning ties, this study provides insights how professionals can be stimulated to build rich personal learning networks in the vocational sector.

Originality/value

The authors extend earlier research with in-depth information on the different types of learning activities professionals engage in in their personal learning networks with different stakeholders. The ego-network perspective reveals how different social mechanisms influence professionals’ agency to shape informal learning networks with different stakeholders.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

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Article
Publication date: 29 December 2017

Barbara Murphy, Chris Gibbs, Kate Hoppe, Deepika Ratnaike and Harry Lovelock

The Mental Health Professionals Network (MHPN) was established to support and enhance collaborative care among health professionals working in primary mental healthcare…

Abstract

Purpose

The Mental Health Professionals Network (MHPN) was established to support and enhance collaborative care among health professionals working in primary mental healthcare. The MHPN has two primary arms: face-to-face network meetings and online webinars. The purpose of this paper is to investigate attitudinal and practice changes amongst health professionals after participation in MHPN’s network meetings.

Design/methodology/approach

In April 2016, an online survey was e-mailed to health professionals who had attended at least one network meeting during 2015. The survey asked about practice changes across seven key areas relating to increased awareness of and interaction with professionals from other disciplines. Interdisciplinary differences were investigated using the χ2 statistic (p<0.05).

Findings

A total of 1,375 health professionals participated in the survey. For each of the seven practice changes investigated, between 74 and 92 per cent of respondents had made the change. Those who attended more network meetings were significantly more likely to have made changes. General practitioners were significantly more likely than other professionals to have made changes.

Research limitations/implications

Attendance at MHPN network meetings has a positive impact on health professionals’ attitudes and practices towards a more collaborative approach to mental healthcare.

Originality/value

MHPN is a unique, national platform successfully delivering opportunities for interdisciplinary professional development in the primary mental health sector. The model is unique, cost-effective, practitioner driven and transferable to other settings.

Details

Journal of Integrated Care, vol. 26 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1476-9018

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 19 September 2016

Fatou Farima Bagayogo, Annick Lepage, Jean-Louis Denis, Lise Lamothe, Liette Lapointe and Isabelle Vedel

The purpose of this paper of inter-professional networks is to analyze the evolution of relationships between professional groups enacting new forms of collaboration to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper of inter-professional networks is to analyze the evolution of relationships between professional groups enacting new forms of collaboration to address clinical imperatives.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses a case study based on semi-structured interviews with physicians and nurses, document analysis and informal discussions.

Findings

This study documents how two inter-professional networks were developed through professional agency. The findings show that the means by which networks are developed influence the form of collaboration therein. One of the networks developed from day-to-day, immediately relevant, exchange, for patient care. The other one developed from more formal and infrequent research and training exchanges that were seen as less decisive in facilitating patient care. The latter resulted in a loosely knit network based on a small number of ad hoc referrals while the other resulted in a tightly knit network based on frequent referrals and advice seeking.

Practical implications

Developing inter-professional networks likely require a sustained phase of interpersonal contacts characterized by persuasion, knowledge sharing, skill demonstration and trust building from less powerful professional groups to obtain buy-in from more powerful professional groups. The nature of the collaboration in any resulting network depends largely on the nature of these initial contacts.

Originality/value

The literature on inter-professional healthcare networks focusses on mandated networks such as NHS managed care networks. There is a lack of research on inter-professional networks that emerged from the bottom up at the initiative of healthcare professionals in response to clinical imperatives. This study looks at some forms of collaboration that these “grass-root” initiatives engender and how they are consolidated.

Details

Journal of Health Organization and Management, vol. 30 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7266

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Article
Publication date: 3 October 2017

Smaranda Boros and Lore Van Gorp

Integrating predictions of social exchange theory and implicit social cognition, this paper aims to investigate mechanisms of co-evolution between professional and…

Abstract

Purpose

Integrating predictions of social exchange theory and implicit social cognition, this paper aims to investigate mechanisms of co-evolution between professional and personal support networks in a professional, non-hierarchical setting.

Design/methodology/approach

The study covers simultaneously people’s behaviours and their subjective interpretations of them in a cross-lagged network design in a group of 65 MBA students.

Findings

Results show that people build on their professional support network to develop personal support relations. People who have a high status in the professional support network appear to be afraid to lose them by asking too many others for personal support and people with a low status in the professional support network seem also be reluctant to ask many others for personal support.

Practical implications

Although personal support is a key social mechanism facilitating individual well-being and organizational success, support in the workplace often remains limited to professional topics. This research shows why people hesitate to expand their networks in professional settings and to what extent their fears have a basis in reality.

Originality/value

It goes beyond predictions of social exchange theory which inform most network evolution studies and tap into implicit social cognition predictions to expand the explanatory power of the hypotheses. The study’s network analysis takes into account both behaviours and social perceptions. The sample is a non-hierarchical professional group which allows a more ecological observation of how hierarchies are born in social groups.

Details

Team Performance Management: An International Journal, vol. 23 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-7592

Keywords

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