Paper Abstract Series




Edited Volume





Economic Sociology and Organizational Studies Faculty

Ivar Berg

Ivar Berg, stimulated by studies of human capital, has been studying the peculiar neglect by practicing managers of the teachings of orthodox economists in favor of questionable preferences for degrees and diplomas, the costs of which have passed on to consumers in industries in which oligopolistic pricing policies, until the 1980s, were the norm. One of his works informed a Supreme Court decision, in 1971, that made it illegal to use formal education for hires and promotions if the results were discriminating toward "political groups", unless employers could prove that their educational requirements were demonstrable predicators of work performance. Over a 40 year career he has also written widely on industrial relations, human resources policies, business organizations and public policy, and has edited a volume on labor markets, currently under revision.

Representative Publications:

Industrial Sociology. Englewood, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1979.

Education and Jobs: The Great Training Robbery. NY: Prager, 1970; Beacon, 1971; and Penguin, 1973.

Work and Industry: Structures, Markets and Processes, (with Arne Kalleberg). NY: Plenum Publishers, 1987.

Managers and Work Reforms. NY: Free Press, 1978.

Representative Courses:

  • Managers and American Corporations
  • American Society as an Economic Republic
  • Sociology of Economic Organizations

William Bielby

William Bielby studies inequality in organizations.  Much of his research over the past two decades has focused on how organizational policy and practice creates and minimizes barriers to equal employment opportunity.  He also studies organizational processes and careers in the entertainment industry.

Representative Publications:

"Applying Social Research on Stereotyping and Cognitive Bias to Employment Discrimination Litigation:  The Case of Allegations of Systematic Gender Bias at Wal-Mart Stores."  In Robert L. Nelson and Laura Beth Neilsen (eds.), Handbook on Employment Discrimination Research:  Rights and Realities.  Norwell, MA:  Kluwer Academic Press, 2005.

"Rock in a Hard Place:  Grass-Roots Cultural Production in the Post-Elvis Era."  American Sociological Review 69(1), 2004.

"Minimizing Workplace Gender and Racial Bias."  Contemporary Sociology 29(1), 2000.

Randall Collins

Randall Collins studies long-term social and economic change, with an emphasis on the meshings and mutual embeddings of political, economic and cultural networks and dynamics.

Representative Publications:

"An Asian Route to Capitalism: Religious Economy and the Origins of Self-Transforming Growth in Japan." American Sociological Review 62, 1997.

"Market Dynamics as the Engine of Historical Change." Sociological Theory 8, 1990.

Weberian Sociological Theory. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 1986.

Macro-History: Essays in Sociology of the Long Run. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1999.

David Gibson

David Gibson studies organizations, networks and interaction, and is particularly concerned with the nexus of the three, with how organizational and network features are funneled through (and sometimes distorted by) interactional strictures. He is currently engaged in a study of the New York Times – of how front page space (as a scarce resource) is allocated, of the predictors of reporting errors and journalistic misjudgment, and of how reporters are shuffled around the world to cover breaking news.

Representative Publications:

"Taking Turns and Talking Ties: Network Structure and Conversational Sequences," American Journal of Sociology 110(6), 2005.

"Concurrency and Commitment: Network Scheduling and its Consequences for Diffusion," Journal of Mathematical Sociology 29(4), 2005.

"Opportunistic Interruptions: Interactional Vulnerabilities Deriving from Linearization," Social Psychology Quarterly 68(4), 2005.

Representative Courses:

  • Introduction to Sociological Research (Sociology 100)
  • Contemporary Sociological Theory (Sociology 126)

David Grazian

David Grazian studies the production and consumption of commercial entertainment and popular culture. Drawing on a variety of ethnographic and qualitative methods, his research topics in this area have included the rise of the tourism industry surrounding the Chicago blues scene; the staging of creative public relations campaigns in the promotional marketing of downtown nightlife in Philadelphia; the impact of new media and digital technology on the production of popular culture; and the organizational cultures of advertising firms.

Representative Publications:

Blue Chicago: The Search for Authenticity in Urban Blues Clubs. Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press, 2003.

"The Production of Popular Music as a Confidence Game: The Case of the Chicago Blues," Qualitative Sociology 27, 2004.

"The Symbolic Economy of Authenticity in the Chicago Blues Scene." In A. Bennett and R. Peterson (eds.), Music Scenes: Local, Translocal and Virtual, Nashville: Vanderbilt Univ. Press, 2004.

"Opportunities for Ethnography in the Sociology of Music," Poetics 32, 2004.

"A Digital Revolution? A Reassessment of New Media and Cultural Production in the Digital Age," Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 597, 2005.

Representative Courses:

  • The Sociology of Media and Popular Culture (Sociology 137)
  • Culture, Arts and Media in Urban Context (Sociology 336)
  • Field Methods of Social Research (Sociology 530)

Mauro F. Guillén

Mauro F. Guillén studies globalization, managerial ideologies and cross-national organizational patterns, and how they change over the course of economic development. He has done field work in Western Europe, Argentina and South Korea.

Representative Publications:

The Limits of Convergence: Globalization and Organizational Change in Argentina, South Korea, and Spain. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2001.

"Globalization Pressures and the State: The Global Spread of Central Bank Independence," (with Simone Polillo). American Journal of Sociology, 2005.

Models of Management: Work, Authority, and Organization in a Comparative Perspective. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1994.

Representative Courses:

  • Globalization (College 001, Sociology 012, Anthropology 12)

Martine Haas

Martine Haas studies collaboration in complex organizations. Her current research projects focus on how individuals, teams, and organizations use widely dispersed knowledge to carry out innovative projects that require cooperation within and across groups. She conducts multi-method field studies in the context of global firms, multilateral government agencies, and universities.

Representative Publications:

"Knowledge Gathering, Team Capabilities, and Project Performance in Challenging Work Environments." Management Science 52, 2006.

"Acquiring and Applying Knowledge in Transnational Teams: The Roles of Cosmopolitans and Locals." Organization Science 17, 2006.

"When Using Knowledge Can Hurt Performance: An Empirical Test of Competitive Bidding in a Management Consulting Company," (with M. Hansen). Strategic Management Journal 26, 2005.

Peter H. Huang

Peter H. Huang's current research interests include an options theory of litigation; regulation of derivatives and hedge funds; ethical, legal and social implications of reprogenetic technology; and Asian business networks, forms of economic organization and corruption.

Representative Publications:

"Dangers of Monetary Commensurability: A Psychological Game Model of Contagion." University of Pennsylvania Law Review 146, 1998.

"More Order without More Law: A Theory of Social Norms and Organizational Cultures," (with Ho-Mou Wu). Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization 10, 1994.

"Emotional Responses in Litigation," (with Ho-Mou Wu). International Review of Law and Economics 12, 1992.

Representative Courses:

  • Law, Science and Technology

Jerry A. Jacobs

Jerry A. Jacobs is Professor of Sociology and Chair of the Graduate Program in Sociology at the University of Pennsylvania, where he has taught since earning his Ph.D. in Sociology from Harvard University in 1983. He has studied a number of aspects of women's employment, including authority, earnings, working conditions, part-time work and entry into male-dominated occupations. His current research projects include a study of women in higher education, funded by the Spencer Foundation, and a study of working time and work-family conflict, funded by the Sloan Foundation. He uses both sociological and economic analysis to better understand gender inequality in contemporary society.

Representative Publications:

"Gender, The Welfare State, and Public Employment: A Comparative Study of Seven Industrialized Countries," (with J.C. Gornick). American Sociological Review 63(5), 1998.

"Who Are the Overworked Americans?" (with K. Gerson). Review of Social Economy 56(4), 1998.

"Gender Inequality and Higher Education." Annual Review of Sociology 22, 1996.

Representative Courses:

  • Social Inequality (Sociology 650)

Sarah Kaplan

Sarah Kaplan's research focuses on the role of managerial interpretive processes in shaping strategic outcomes in organizations. Specifically, she takes a practice perspective in understanding how different interpretations (or frames) emerge and how, through collective and often political processes, they affect strategic choice and action. She explores how this interpretive, micro sociological view of strategy-making connects to more traditional economic explanations for strategic outcomes such as interests and incentives. Her work focuses on organizational strategy-making during periods of discontinuous technological change in such settings as biotechnology, personal digital assistants (PDA's), telecommunications and nanotechnology.

Representative Publications:

"Framing contests: strategy making during a technological discontinuity." Wharton School Working Paper, 2005.

"Inertia and incentives: bridging organizational economics and organizational theory" (with R. Henderson). Organization Science 16(5), 509-521, 2005.

"Discontinuities and Senior Management: Assessing the Role of Recognition in Pharmaceutical Firm Response to Biotechnology" (with F. Murray and R. Henderson). Industrial and Corporate Change 12(4), 203-233, 2003.

Marshall Meyer

Marshall Meyer studies the confluence of organizational structure, strategy, performance measurement and compensation in large (usually global) firms. He has also written extensively on bureaucratization, organizational change and organizational failure.

Representative Publications:

"Measuring Performance in Economic Organizations." In N. Smelser and R. Swedberg (eds.), Handbook of Economic Sociology, Princeton University Press and Russell Sage Foundation, 1994.

"Performance, Compensation and the Balanced Scorecard," (with Christopher Ittner and David Larcker), working paper, 1998.

"Permanent Failure and the Failure of Organizational Performance." In H. Anheier (ed)., When Things Go Wrong: Organizational Failures and Breakdowns, Sage Publications, 1999.

"Performance Measurement in the Deconstructed Global Firm," paper presented to the Strategic Management Society, Berlin, October 1999.

Representative Courses:

  • Global Strategic Management (Management 655)
  • Psychological and Social Foundations of Management (Management 933)

Ewa Morawska

Ewa Morawska, Emeritus Professor of Sociology and History, studies socioeconomic transformation in postcommunist Eastern Europe and, in particular, the adaptability of some constitutive elements of the "homo sovieticus" syndrome to the circumstances of late (service) capitalism with a large informal labor/production market and internationalization of labor.

Representative Publications:

Recent publications include "The Malleable Homo Sovieticus: International Migrant Entrepreneurs in Postcommunist Eastern Europe"; "Transnational Migrations in the Enlarged European Union: A Perspective from East Central Europe"; "International Migration and the Consolidation of Democracy in Postcommunist Eastern Europe: A Problematic Relationship in a Historical Perspective."

Current research also includes an investigation of immigrant/native black relations at work in selected American cities that will appear in D. Massey (editor), Penn Sociologists on Race, forthcoming.

Johannes Pennings

Johannes Pennings' research areas include innovation, organizational mortality and change, and technological trajectories. His current research includes one project that seeks to identify the emergence of a new market by examining the patterns of joint venturing and patent citations across existing markets, in order to answer the question of what firm attributes shape their role in mediating convergence among markets. A second project considers information on firms, products, markets and customers on the rise and fall of technologies as these become bundled around a product, in this case, tennis rackets.

Representative Publications:

"Social Capital of Organizations: Conceptualization, Level of Analysis and Performance Implications," (with K. Lee). In Shaul Gabbay and Roger Leenders (eds.), Corporate Social Capital, Norwell, MA: Kluwer Academic, 1999.

"Human and Social Capital and Organizational Dissolution," (with Arjen van Witteloostuijn and Kyungmook Lee), Academy of Management Journal 41(4), 1998. 

"Top Management Pay: Impact of Overt and Covert Power," (with Harry S. Barkema). Organization Studies 19(6), 1998. 

Representative Courses:

  • Organization Design (Management 239 - undergraduate level)
  • Organization Design (Management 952 - doctoral level)

Lori Rosenkopf

Lori Rosenkopf’s research interests include how organizational communities shape technological evolution, and how interorganizational linkages facilitate exploration, knowledge transfer and innovation diffusion. Her current projects focus on these dynamics in the cellular, optical disc and semiconductor industries using data on firm patents, alliances and technical committee participation.

Representative Publications:

"Organizational Determinants of Technological Change: Toward a Sociology of Technological Evolution," (with M. L. Tushman). In B. Staw and L. Cummings (editors), Research in Organizational Behavior, Vol. 14, Greenwich, CT: JAI Press, 1992.

"Social Network Effects on the Extent of Innovation Diffusion: A Computer Simulation," (with E. Abrahamson). Organization Science 8, 1997.

"The Coevolution of Community Networks and Technology: Lessons from the Flight Simulation Industry," (with M. L. Tushman). Industrial and Corporate Change 7, 1998.

Representative Courses:

  • Network Theory and Applications (Management 932)
  • Research Methods (Management 953)

Nancy Rothbard

Nancy Rothbard studies the interplay between emotions and engagement in multiple roles. Specifically, she explores how people’s emotional responses to one role or task affect their subsequent engagement in another role or task. She has examined these questions in the context of work and family roles and in the context of multiple tasks that people perform within the work role. She is also interested in how gender role socialization affects these processes.

Representative Publications:

“Frustration and Satisfaction at Work: Emotion and Engagement in Multiple Tasks,” (with Adam Galinsky & Victoria Medvec). Working Paper.

“Enriching or Depleting? The Dynamics of Engagement in Work and Family.” Working Paper.

“Mechanisms Linking Work and Family: Specifying the Relationships between Work and Family Constructs,” (with Jeffrey R. Edwards). Academy of Management Review 25(1), 2000.

“Out on a Limb: The Role of Context and Impression Management in Selling Gender-equity Issues,” (with Susan J. Ashford, Sandy K. Piderit & Jane E. Dutton). Administrative Science Quarterly 43, 1998.

Michael Useem

Michael Useem conducts research and writes on corporate organization, change, leadership and governance.  He also studies institutional investors and their relations with companies.

Representative Publications:

The Leadership Moment: Nine True Stories of Triumph and Disaster and Their Lessons for Us All. New York: Times Books/Random House, 1998.

“Corporate Leadership in a Globalizing Equity Market.” Academy of Management Executive 12(4), 1998.

Investor Capitalism: How Money Managers are Changing the Face of Corporate America. New York: Basic Books/HarperCollins, 1996.

Executive Defense: Shareholder Power and Corporate Reorganization. Cambridge, MA.: Harvard University Press, 1993.

Representative Courses:

  • Foundations of Leadership and Teamwork (Management 652, first-year MBA course)

  • Managing People at Work (Management 621, first-year MBA course)

  • Short-term programs on leadership and change

Christophe Van den Bulte

Christophe Van den Bulte's research focuses on the diffusion of innovations, social networks, and business marketing. Current projects include studying knowledge spillovers and their absorption within marketing departments, and developing an event history model of innovation adoption that separates two distinct stages (awareness followed by evaluation) and their distinct social contagion drivers (e.g., cognitive institutionalization vs. competitive pressures). 

Representative Publications:

“Social Contagion and Income Heterogeneity in New Product Diffusion: A Meta-analytic Test,” (with S. Stremersch). Marketing Science 23(4), 2004.


“Vertical Marketing Systems for Complex Products: A Triadic Perspective,” (with S. Wuyts, S. Stremersch, and P.H. Franses). Journal of Marketing Research 41(4), 2004.


Medical Innovation Revisited: Social Contagion versus Marketing Effort,” (with G.L. Lilien). American Journal of Sociology 106(5), 2001.

Valery Yakubovich

Valery Yakubovich studies coordination mechanisms in external and internal labor markets with a particular focus on the mutual effects of social relationships in organizations and markets, on one hand, and motivation, decision-making, and performance of workers and managers, on the other. His current projects explore these effects in the diverse organizational settings of Internet-based virtual firms and large businesses in Russia.

Representative Publications:

“Stages of the Recruitment Process and the Referrer’s Performance Effect,” (with Daniela Lup). Forthcoming in Organization Science.

“Passive Recruitment in the Russian Urban Labor Market.” Work and Occupations 33(3): 307-334, 2006.

“Weak Ties, Information, and Influence: How Workers Find Jobs in a Local Russian Labor Market.” American Sociological Review 70(3):408-421, 2005.