At the world’s largest conference of management scholars, Northeastern pulls out all the stops

Several hundred of the more than 8,000 from around the globe who participated in the annual Academy of Management Conference in Boston in early August — the largest gathering in the world for scholars of business and management — attended research and professional development events at Northeastern University, including a special reception at Northeastern’s Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex.

The Academy of Management is like its own “mini corporation,” says Samina Karim, professor of entrepreneurship and innovation. In 2020, Karim chaired the Strategic Management Division, the Academy’s second largest of 26 total divisions with over 5,000 members. The divisions are a necessity, she says, because “The Academy,” as its members call it, has over 18,000 total members.

This year, Karim — with professor of international business and strategy Alvaro Cuervo-Cazurra and professor of management and organizational development Jamie Ladge — co-organized a reception in Northeastern University’s Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex for conference attendees.

While the conference is held in a new city every year, a Northeastern reception has become a tradition. The 2024 AOM Conference will be held in Chicago, and “Northeastern will host a reception again,” Karim says.

“That reception serves a few purposes,” she continues. “One is certainly networking,” a necessity that “can lead to research projects, new initiatives and ideas for future collaboration.”

The second purpose is simple: public relations. “It’s our way of highlighting our faculty … to show that we’re successful and growing. And then the third [purpose], which is very important, is it’s also a recruiting platform” for soon-to-graduate, innovative doctoral students investigating institutions with which they may be seeking employment.

Broadly speaking, the AOM Conference features two kinds of events: professional development opportunities and research events.

Participants in the International Management Division Doctoral Student Consortium. Courtesy photo.

For the former, Northeastern “hosted the International Management Division Doctoral Student Consortium, Junior Faculty Consortium and Meet the Editors Session,” Cuervo-Cazurra wrote in an email. “In the consortia, senior faculty provided suggestions for participants on how to succeed in their professional lives.”

When it comes to research, Ladge noted that numerous Northeastern faculty members presented at the conference. (See the full AOM 2023 Annual Meeting Program for all the presentations.)

Dozens of events and sub-conferences occur under the larger AOM umbrella. Cuervo-Cazurra co-organized the States, Firms and Sustainability conference, which included over 100 participants, with “leading scholars” presenting, he wrote. The conference encouraged “conversation among people interested in the intersection” of sustainability and state systems.

Additionally, several Northeastern faculty and postdoctoral students won notable publication awards at the conference, including Laura Huang, distinguished professor of management and organizational development, whose co-authored paper “We Ask Men To Win and Women Not To Lose: Closing the Gender Gap in Startup Funding” won the coveted Academy of Management Journal (AMJ) Impact Award.

Dean of the D’Amore-McKim School of Business David De Cremer’s co-authored paper, “When Conscientious Employees Meet Intelligent Machines: An Integrative Approach Inspired by Complementarity Theory and Role Theory,” was a finalist for the AMJ Best Article Award. (See this NGN Research post for the full list of Northeastern University award recipients.)

“We are a known event,” Karim says of Northeastern’s reputation at the conference. “We had about 300 people” attend the reception, with scholars “from all over the world … every continent except Antarctica.”

“If they have a research budget, this is the conference they would spend it on,” she says. And Northeastern will be there to receive them.

Noah Lloyd is a Senior Writer for NGN Research. Email him at Follow him on Twitter at @noahghola.

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