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EGOS 2020: Hybridity and Beyond (deadline approaching!)

  • 1.  EGOS 2020: Hybridity and Beyond (deadline approaching!)

    Posted 01-07-2020 23:22

    EGOS 2020 Sub-theme 27:

    Hybridity and Beyond: Exploring Alternative Organizational Approaches for Addressing Social Issues

    Submission deadline: Jan 14, 2020


    Tommaso Ramus, Católica Lisbon, School of Business & Economics, Portugal

    Marya Besharov, University of Oxford, United Kingdom

    Francesco Rullani, Ca' Foscari University of Venice, Italy

    Call for papers:

    In order to address deep-rooted societal challenges such as poverty, environmental degradation, health, and human rights, new forms of organizing are emerging at the intersection of business, charity, and government. Social enterprises and B-corporations pursue social and environmental missions through commercial ventures (Smith et al., 2013; Gehman & Grimes, 2017). Cross-sector partnerships bring together for-profit, non-profit and government organizations (Sharma & Bansal, 2017; Nicholls & Huybrechts, 2016). Traditional for-profit businesses engage in corporate social responsibility efforts (Margolis & Walsh, 2003; Marquis & Quan, 2013), and governments incorporate market-based approaches to improve social welfare (Polzer et al., 2016).

    To understand this phenomenon, organizational theorists often draw on the concept of hybridity – the mixing of identities, forms or logics that would conventionally not go together (Battilana et al., 2017; Battilana & Lee, 2014). For example, studies have explored how combining banking and development logics in microfinance organizations can help alleviate poverty in underdeveloped countries (Battilana & Dorado, 2010; Zhao & Wry, 2016) and how mixing elements of non-profit and for-profit forms can yield new approaches to issues such as homelessness (Tracey et al., 2011). Other work examines the role of hybridity in addressing challenges of sustainability (Jay, 2013; York et al., 2016), unemployment and economic opportunity (Smith & Besharov, 2019; Ramus et al., 2017), and medical innovation (Murray, 2010).

    Building on the successful sub-themes on hybrid organizations and hybridity organized at the 32nd and 34th EGOS Colloquia, this sub-theme focuses on how and under what conditions organizational hybridity can generate social impact, contribute to societal transformation, and provide solutions to complex social issues and grand challenges. The sub-theme will feature a keynote from Antonino Vaccaro (IESE Business School).

    While we welcome studies that focus on tensions in hybridity, we are particularly interested in work that explores how tensions can become opportunities for innovation (Jay, 2013), market transformation (York et al., 2016), and societal impact (Mongelli et al., 2018). We also welcome studies that set the boundaries of hybridity, either questioning its role as a mechanism to transform societies (Mair et al., 2016; Mongelli & Rullani, 2017), or examining alternative organizing strategies for addressing societal issues and grand challenges (George et al., 2016). Specific questions of interest include:

    • From tensions to opportunities: How and under what conditions can different types of tensions that emerge in hybrids be transformed into opportunities for learning, creativity, and innovation? Alternatively, how and under what conditions do these tensions degenerate in detrimental conflict?
    • Metrics and performance: Given their multiple and often competing objectives, how do hybrids measure performance? What role does measurement play in managing internal tensions, gaining legitimacy and resources, and expanding social impact?
    • Hybridity and social impact: What mechanisms, and processes enable hybrid organizations to expand their impact in either scale or scope? What factors inhibit hybrids from scaling up or deepening their scope of impact? Are there trade-offs between scale and scope and how do hybrids manage them?
    • Hybridity and societal transformation: What types of societal issues are hybrids well-suited to address? What institutional infrastructures facilitate or hinder hybrids' capabilities to induce societal transformation? And what transformational processes might hybridity jeopardize?
    • Hybridity and grand challenges: How does organizational hybridity contribute to addressing grand challenges? What is the role of hybrid individuals, practices, organizations, and fields in fostering more inclusive societies and more sustainable markets?
    • Hybridity and (social) innovation: What organizational arrangements allow hybrids to generate (social) innovation? What factors enable and/or constrain hybrid organizations from exploiting their potential for innovation? When is hybridity not useful for social innovation and change?
    • Beyond hybridity: To what extent is hybridity different in kind from other forms of organizing versus merely differing in degree? How do alternative organizational approaches to addressing social issues differ, both in their design and structure and in their potential for impact?

    For full details see:

    Marya Besharov
    Professor of Organisations and Impact
    Saïd Business School
    University of Oxford