Organizational Behavior

The organizational behavior group is dedicated to advancing research, teaching, and practice regarding the management of organizations.

The group’s faculty members research fundamental questions in organizational behavior, from both a social psychological and a sociological perspective, and publish their research in books and in the top management and social science journals.

MBA courses in organizational behavior help students to understand behavior at both the individual and organization levels. Topics at the individual or “micro” level include individual motivation and behavior, decision-making, interpersonal communication and influence, small group behavior, and individual, dyadic, and intergroup conflict and cooperation. At the organization or “macro” level, topics include organizational growth, organizational change, organizational learning, organizations and leadership, power, social networks, and social responsibility.

More generally, the organizational behavior curriculum helps prepare students for their managerial careers, providing them with frameworks for diagnosing and dealing with the problems and opportunities that typically arise in organizational settings.

Recent Journal Articles in Organizational Behavior

Ashley Martin, Michael S. North, Katherine W. Phillips
Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. March
1 , 2019, Vol. 45, Issue 3, Pages 342-359

Both older individuals and women are proscribed from engaging in power-related behaviors, with women proscribed from behaving agentically and older individuals expected to cede desirable resources through “Succession.” However, little...

Neil Malhotra, Benoît Monin, Michael Tomz
American Political Science Review. February
2019, Vol. 113, Issue 1, Pages 19–37

Previous research has emphasized corporate lobbying as a pathway through which businesses influence government policy. This article examines a less-studied mode of influence: private regulation, defined as voluntary efforts by...

Ashley Martin, Katherine W. Phillips
Journal of Experimental Social Psychology (in press). January
23 , 2019

Women continue to be underrepresented in STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) fields. As such, there has been an increased interest in interventions to reduce bias against, and increase inclusion of, women in...

Nir Halevy, Eliran Halali, Julian J. Zlatev
Academy of Management Annals. January
1 , 2019, Vol. 13, Issue 1

Brokerage and brokering are pervasive and consequential organizational phenomena. Prevailing models underscore social structure and focus on the consequences that come from brokerage—occupying a bridging position between disconnected others in a...

David W. Lehman, Kieran O'Connor..., Glenn R. Carroll
Review of General Psychology.
2019, Vol. In press

Acting on Authenticity: Individual Interpretations and Behavioral Responses

Many individuals in advanced consumer economies prefer authentic producers, products, and services. An important but overlooked question concerns the psychology behind
Daniel W. Elfenbein, Adina Sterling
Strategy Science. December
2018, Vol. 3, Issue 4, Pages 555-682

This paper examines when and under what conditions whom to hire is a strategic decision. We identify four mechanisms involved in hiring that add to the “strategicness” of human capital...

Rachel Wetts, Robb Willer
Social Forces. December
2018, Vol. 97, Issue 2, Pages 793-822

Here, we integrate prior work to develop and test a theory of how perceived macro-level trends in racial standing shape whites’ views of welfare policy. We argue that when whites...

Vivek Kullkarni, Margaret L. Kern, David Stillwell, Michal Kosinski, Sandra Matz, Lyle Ungar, Steven Skiena, H. Andrew Schwartz
PLoS ONE. November
28 , 2018, Vol. 13, Issue 11

Over the past century, personality theory and research has successfully identified core sets of characteristics that consistently describe and explain fundamental differences in the way people think, feel and behave....

Adina Sterling, Roberto M. Fernandez
Management Science. November
2018, Vol. 64, Issue 11, Pages 4967-5460

Although women pursue managerial credentials at nearly the same rate as men, gender disparities in wages exist because of the shortfall in wages women sustain relative to men at the...

Daniel Q. Gillion, Sarah A. Soule
Social Science Quarterly. November
2018, Vol. 99, Issue 5, Pages 1649-1664


The objective of this study was to understand the effect of citizen mobilization on both electoral outcomes and on the likelihood that new candidates will enter races to challenge...

Brent Simpson, Robb Willer, Matthew Feinberg
Socius: Sociological Research for a Dynamic World. October
11 , 2018, Vol. 4, Pages 1-14

How do people respond to violent political protest? The authors present a theory proposing that the use of violence leads the general public to view a protest group as less...

Amir Goldberg, Sarah K. Stein
American Sociological Review. October
2018, Vol. 83, Issue 5, Pages 897-932

Network models of diffusion predominantly think about cultural variation as a product of social contagion. But culture does not spread like a virus. We propose an alternative explanation we call associative diffusion....