Chair's Message

2021 OMT Chair’s Message
Renate Meyer, WU Vienna & CBS Copenhagen
2021 OMT Division Chair

What an academic year! When we were submitting our papers, PDW and Symposia proposals last January, who would have anticipated that we would not be able to physically meet this year in Vancouver – quite apart from the many other personal and professional challenges 2020 is bringing us? Most importantly: We sincerely hope you and your loved ones are safe and well in this unsettled time.

The whole OMT Executive Committee has been working very hard to make our annual conference a good virtual experience for everybody. But let me start with a huge “Thank you!” especially to two of them: Our Program Chair Martin Kilduff and our PDW Chair Eva Boxenbaum for their incredible efforts and energy to offer a stimulating and inspiring scholarly program under these difficult circumstances. Martin and Eva, you are truly amazing!

During the months of lock-down in spring, we have started with innovative formats especially designed to support our more junior members. Let me highlight two initiatives in particular:

  • OMT Meetups were a series of one-to-one online conversations between senior and junior scholars (including final-year PhD Candidates and Post-docs). We are tremendously grateful to the many senior scholars who immediately signed up – thank you so much!
  • Thursdays with OMT were devoted to job markets around the world and how to move forward in the current circumstances. Again, many thanks to all the deans, volunteers, and the whole OMT EC for initiating and helping with these events! We will carry on with these and other formats during the coming year to best support OMT members around the world.

We have also continued with our OMT Podcast series, initiated by our communications chair Hovig Tchalian and social media chair Deborah Anderson, and hosted by Tanja Ohlson from Oxford University. Please check out the podcast here.

The strategic initiatives to develop and sustain quality connections among scholars from underrepresented areas and OMT and AOM in general have been temporarily paused due to the travel restrictions. The workshop we had planned to co-organize with two Latin American institutions this fall can obviously not take place at this time and has been postponed to 2021. The goal remains to offer a forum for OMT and local scholars to meet and discuss frontiers of knowledge research, theory, and methods, to help all participants initiate, develop, and ultimately publish, high-quality research.

The OMT Division also became a sponsor of the PhD Project Management Doctoral Students Association (MDSA) to support their work to advance workplace diversity by increasing  the diversity of business school faculty.

In spring, we also concluded our 5-year Division review. Thank you to all of you who contributed with thoughtful feedback and constructive input.  Please read the full report and our summary.

Let me take this opportunity to thank all the sponsors who have provided financial support also in this difficult time and for the virtual conference! Please consider having your school join this list of amazing sponsors and help us expand and constantly improve how we serve our members. We have a new sponsor for the OMT Best Entrepreneurship Paper Award – thank you to the journal Innovation: Organization & Management. Thank you also to Organization Studies and SAGE for the continued sponsorship of the Best International Paper Award.


Now, on to my report from the 2020 Annual Conference, the first AoM conference that was held virtually. A huge thanks to the enormous efforts of all those who, in various roles, made this virtual experience possible: as PDW and program chairs; consortia, PDW or Symposia organizers; session chairs; hosts of OMT Cafés; reviewers; and, in particular, as participants. You really made this virtual AoM an excellent event! Below you can read more about our outstanding sessions, workshops, and other initiatives. Thank you all for creating and participating in our division. It is thanks to you all that OMT continues to be The Place to Be!

  • Program Chair Martin Kilduff reports on the fabulous virtual program.
  • PDW Chair Eva Boxenbaum reports on this year’s exciting PDW program.
  • Lisa Cohen and Santi Furnari provide insights from the Doctoral Student Consortium, which prepares students in the final phase of their doctoral programs for future careers.
  • Olenka Kacperczyk and Marya Besharov share insights about the highlights of the Junior Faculty Consortium.
  • Dalhia Mani and Pablo Martin de Holan provide an overview about the OMT Global PDW on ‘Doing Organizational Research Around the World,’ which was included in the PDW Program for the first time this year.
  • Membership Committee Chair Emily Block informs us about our innovative and social distancing off-program options.
  • Mary-Hunter McDonnell, OMT’s Research Committee, Chair highlights the award winners for 2020.
  • We are extremely honored to have won two of the major AoM Awards this year.
    Special congratulations to Brittany Bond for being awarded not only with the OMT Louis Pondy Best Dissertation Paper Award but also with the William Newman Award, and to Devi Vijay, Philippe Monin, and Mukta Kulkarni for winning the OMT Best International Paper Award and the Caroline Dexter Award.
    Thank you to Program Chair Martin Kilduff and the entire Research Committee led by Mae McDonnell for their excellent work.
  • Our Communications Chair Hovig Tchalian and our Social Media Chair Deborah Anderson anticipated the dynamic situation and did a great job spreading the word about OMT. You can find the communication report here, and the social media report here.
  • Our Past OMT Chair Peer Fiss reports on our 18th annual OMT Dissertation Proposal Workshop.
  • Special thanks to Mike Lounsbury for chairing the OMT Best Published Paper committee and our congratulations to Marc de Rond, Isaac Holeman, and Jennifer Howard-Grenville for winning this award with their 2019 AMJ article entitled “Sensemaking from the body: An enactive ethnography of rowing the Amazon”.
  • Let me especially congratulate our 2020 OMT Distinguished Scholar Ann Langley. Ann embodies a career of scholarly achievement, has had a significant impact on OMT scholarship, and is a role model for many of us! You can watch Ann's Distinguished Scholar Talk at the 2020 AOM virtual meeting here.
  • The Joanne Martin Trailblazer Award, which recognizes scholars who have taken a leadership role in the field of OMT by opening up new lines of thinking or inquiry, is awarded biannually. My congratulations to Doug Creed, Bryant Hudson, Gerardo Okhuysen, and Maureen Scully for their scholarly efforts in starting and shaping our conversation about LGBT issues, stigma, shame, taboo, and power in organizational settings.
  • Thank you to all of you who participated in our virtual Social Hours and to Mélodie, Eva, and Davide for being formidable co-conspirators!

Unlike in previous years, OMTers did not get the 2020 Artifact at the end of the Business Meeting. But: Be assured that PDW Chair Eva Boxenbaum has something very special for you all!

As every year, it is also time to say farewell to some of our officers and welcome others:

  • Davide Ravasi completed his five years in the executive leadership position of the division. Thank you, Davide! It is very hard to imagine an OMT Board without you. For everyone who has missed the Business Meeting: Do not miss Peer Fiss’s Farewell.
  • Many thanks to Joel Gehman and Michael Smets, who stepped down as Representatives-at-Large after three years of service to the OMT community.
  • Thanks so much also to Deborah Anderson who has been a wonderful Social Media Chair in the past years!
  • A special thanks to Peer Fiss, last year’s Division Chair, for navigating OMT through this challenging time, and, for guiding me through these first three years in the division leadership. I am eternally grateful for all the advice you gave, and I am very glad that you will still stay on the Board in the coming year to continue sharing your experience and wisdom.

A very warm welcome to Forrest Briscoe, our incoming PDW Chair, and our new Representatives-at-Large Michel Anteby, Paul Tracey, and Yutaka Yamauchi. Michel and Paul will work with Santi Furnari and Marya Besharov on the 2021 Consortia, while Yutaka will be involved together with Pablo de Holan in the OMT Global PDW. Welcome also to our new Digital Strategy Officer, Mélodie Cartel, and to our new social media chairs Kevin Lee and Christine Moser, who take over from Deb and will, together with a team of volunteers, keep you updated. If you are not yet following OMT, please do so now on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. We look very much forward to working with you!

This newsletter is also a reminder to start preparing for the 2021 Annual Conference. We hope it will take place in Philadelphia as planned and will keep you updated as soon as we know more.

What you can do right now is:

  • Sign-up to review for OMT! We need you more than ever. The 2021 review system will open in early December, so please sign up. This is YOUR division, and Program Chair Eva Boxenbaum needs your help.
  • Thinking of organizing a PDW? Contact PDW Chair Forrest Briscoe.
  • Submit your papers and symposium proposals to OMT!
  • Thinking of an OMT Café? Contact Emily Block.
  • Keep on the lookout for news of our Junior Faculty Consortium, Doctoral Consortium, Global PDW, and Dissertation Proposal Workshop.


On behalf of the entire Executive Board, thank you all for continuing to make OMT The Place to Be!

Best wishes,


Renate Meyer
2021 OMT Division Chair