Roderick M Kramer

William R. Kimball Professor of Organizational Behavior

Phone: (650) 723-2158


Academic Areas: Organizational Behavior

Roderick M. Kramer is the William R. Kimball Professor of Organizational Behavior. He received his Bachelor's of Arts in Experimental Psychology and Philosophy from California State University Los Angeles, as well as a Master’s Degree in Experimental Social Psychology from the same institution. In 1985, he received his PhD in Social Psychology from the University of California Los Angeles, also completing minors in cognitive psychology and artificial intelligence. He has been a visiting professor at Oxford University, London Business School, Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, and the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. Additionally, Kramer has been a Visiting Scholar at the Hoover Institution, Bellagio Institute, Harvard's Center for Public Leadership, and Harvard Business School. He has been on the Stanford faculty since 1985.

Kramer’s research focuses on a variety of topics, including the psychology of trust and distrust, cooperation and conflict, creativity, individual decision making, the psychology of leadership, impression management, social identity theory, group processes, collective decision making, organizational paranoia, social capital and the nature of the self. His recent research has examined, among other things, the cognitive determinants of judgments of creativity in Hollywood “pitch” meetings, where screenwriters present their ideas to agents, producers and studio executives. Other recent studies examine why cooperative information sharing and coordination failed among U. S. intelligence agencies prior to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, and how trust develops between physicians and their patients.


Kramer is the author or co-author of more than 150 scholarly articles and essays. His work has appeared in leading academic journals, such as Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Administrative Science Quarterly, and the Academy of Management Journal. He has also published in popular journals, such as the Harvard Business Review. Kramer is also the author or co-author of numerous books, including Negotiation in Social Contexts; The Psychology of the Social Self; Trust in Organizations: Frontiers of Theory and Research, Power and Influence in Organizations; Psychology of Leadership; Trust and Distrust Within Organizations; Misuses of Power: Causes and Correctives; Trust and Distrust: Progress and Promise in Theory and Research; Social Decision Making: Social Dilemmas, Social Values, and Ethical Judgments; Social Cognition, Social Identity, and Intergroup Relations; and most recently, Restoring Trust in Organizations and Leaders: Enduring Challenges and Emerging Answers. In 2004 he won the best publication award from the Academy of Management and the Best Paper of the Year Award from the Academy Management Journal. In 2004, he was also the second place winner of the McKinsey Award for Most Outstanding Article in Management Theory. He has served on the selection committee of U. S. News and World Report’s annual issue on America’s Best Leaders. He has been on the editorial boards of leading academic journals including Administrative Science Quarterly, Organization Science, and Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes. He is a former co-editor of Research in Organizational Behavior.

Kramer has developed and taught innovative MBA courses on negotiation and conflict management, group processes and group decision making, leadership, creativity, power and influence, the nature of happiness, and the meaning of life. In Executive Education, he has taught in the Negotiations, Advanced Negotiations, Teams and Groups, Corporate Governance Program, the Executive Program for Growing Companies, Executive Program on Change, and the Stanford Executive Program, the School’s flagship six-week program for senior executives. Since 2001, he has also taught extensively at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Most recently, he has been teaching a popular course on happiness and the meaning of life in Stanford's distinguished Sophomore College Program. Kramer has also consulted with numerous organizations on issues of trust and distrust, leadership, group decision making, and creativity.

Academic Degrees

PhD, Univ. of California, Los Angeles, 1985; MA, California State University 1981; BA, California State Univ., Los Angeles, 1977.

Professional Experience

At Stanford 1985-

Visiting Scholar, Harvard Business School 2010; Center Advisor and Visiting Professor, Harvard Kennedy School, 2009-2010; Visiting Prof. John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University 2002; Visiting Prof., Oxford University and London Business School, 2001; Visiting Assoc. Prof., Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern Univ., 1991. Visting scholar at Bellagio Center, Hoover Institution, and international cooperation working group at Center for Advanced Studies.

Selected Publications

  • Restoring Trust in Organizations and Leaders: Enduring Questions, Emerging Answers: Oxford University Press, 2012
  • Social Cognition, Social Identity, and Intergroup Relations: Psychology Press, 2011
  • Social Decision Making: Social Dilemmas, Social Values, and Ethical Judgments: Routledge, 2010
  • Trust and Distrust in Organizations: Dilemmas and Approaches: Russell Sage Foundation, 2004

Working Papers

  • 1065: The More the Merrier? Social Psychological Aspects of Multi-Party Negotiations in Organizations
  • 1066: When the Going Gets Tough: The Effects of Resource Scarcity on Group Conflict and Cooperation
  • 1067: How Much is Enough? Psychological Aspects of "Guns Versus Butter" Decisions in a Simulated Security Dilemma
  • 1085: Intergroup Relations and Organizational Dilemmas: The Role of Categorization Processes
  • 1107: When in Doubt . . . : Cooperation in a Noisy Prisoner's Dilemma
  • 1173: Organizational Images as Negotiated Accounts: A Dynamic Conception of Impression Management
  • 1178: Self-Enchancement Biases and Negotiator Judgement: Effects of Self-Esteem and Mood
  • 1179: Social Identity and Self-Presentational Concerns in Bargaining: Evidence of Bounded Individuality
  • 1199: Organizational Impression Management as a Reciprocal Influence Process: The Neglected Role of the Organizational Audience
  • 1200: Cooperation and Organizational Identification
  • 1203: The Social Context of Negotiation: Effects of Social Identify and Accountability on Negotiator Decision Making
  • 844: Deterrence and Security in a Dangerous World: How Much is Enough?
  • 858: Social Values and Cooperative Response to a Simulated Resource Conservation Crisis
  • 870: Social Group Identity and the Emergence of Cooperation in Resource Conservation Dilemmas
  • 957: Nuclear Weapons, Peace and the Security Dilemma: The Role of Cognitive Processes in Deterrence
  • 968: Helping the Group or Helping One's Self? Cognitive-Motivational Determinants of Cooperation in Resource Conservation Dilemmas
  • 972: Windows of Vulnerability or Cognitive Illusions? Cognitive Processes and the Nuclear Arms Race

Selected Cases

  • OB77: Highbridge Capital Management: Building a Sustainable Organization
  • EM1: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit "Showrunner"
  • EM2: Walt Disney Motion Pictures Group: Nina Jacobson
  • EM3: Denise Di Novi: Movie Producer
  • EM4: Ron Meyer: Universal Studios President and COO
  • EM5: Lifetime Networks: Andrea Wong
  • EM6: Fox Entertainment President: Kevin Reilly

Awards and Honors

  • Award, Best Publication in Organizational Behavior, 2003, Academy of Management
  • Best Publication in Academy of Management Journal, 2003, Academy of Management

Courses Taught

  • GSBGEN 527: Successful Creativity and the MBA Mind: A Scientific Framework for Engaging Personal Creativity
  • OB 383: Lives of Consequence: How Individuals Discover Paths to Meaningful Engagement
  • OB 555: Mastering Life's Moments: The Challenge of Optimizing your Experience


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