MBS DBA Student Emily Patterson Shared her Research Ideas at the Academy of Management Conference

The Academy of Management (AoM) Conference took place this year in Boston, Massachusetts, USA at the Hynes Convention Center from 9.-13. August 2019. The conference allowed consortiums to get together to display up and coming research and exchange research idea. I was lucky enough to attend the Organizational Communications and Information Systems (OCIS) doctoral consortiums and to display my research topic.

On Friday, the conference kicked off with the individual consortiums getting together. The OCIS consortium started at 8:30am with breakfast before we broke out into our small research topic discussion groups. In this discussion group, students were paired up based on research topics and were allowed to give feedback to each other. For each discussion group a faculty member lead the discussion and also provided feedback. After the first breakout session, lunch was served and everyone was treated to delicious Bostonian fare, which included lobster macaroni and cheese and baked cod. Following lunch, the OCIS consortium participated in an hands on ethics presentation where students could weigh in on how they feel about certain scenarios that may take place in the academic world. For example, a case about working together with multiple authors came up and about who gets to be placed as first author on articles. Following the ethical presentation, we dove into our second breakout session, where students were grouped together based on research methodologies. Like the first session, the students and faculty members gave feedback to one another based on their own experiences. I found this breakout group to be most helpful. Following the breakout session the OCIS consortium came together as a whole to discuss the day and to answer any unanswered questions. Later that night, all the students, junior faculty, and faculty members from the OCIS consortium met at Summer Shack restaurant for dinner. This was a great opportunity for students, junior faculty, and faculty to mingle and to share experiences and research ideas. I have to add that the food was also great! I enjoyed the classic lobster roll, which is a Boston favorite. That concluded day one.

Day two brought a different vibe, as it was less hand held and more exploratory. The second day was left up to the individual student to go out and join sessions where faculty and junior faculty were presenting. I had the opportunity to join two sessions, the first being about qualitative methodologies and the second being about dyads within a multilevel framework. Following the sessions around 5:30pm, the OCIS consortium met again so the students could display their research posters allowing other students, junior faculty, and faculty to come around to challenge and admire the students’ current research. I was able to talk to at least ten faculty members about my research and each member provided me with constructive criticism and support, which I will be able to implement into my research. I found this specific part of the conference the scariest, but also the most rewarding.

Overall, I only have positive feedback to give about the AoM conference and about the OCIS consortium. I never really understood what people meant when they had said that they had found a home within a research community. After being able to take part in the OCIS consortium at the AoM conference I now understand what my counterparts mean. I felt accepted, guided, but also challenged, and ultimately at home within the OCIS consortium. I walked away from the conference with not only knowledge that I can incorporate into my research, but also new friends with whom I can share my research with. From attending this conference I learned that it is important to share your research and to talk about research ideas. Only from being vulnerable and from accepting constructive criticism can your own research grow.

I hope more people will decide to submit their research ideas to not only the AoM conference, but to other academic conferences so the discussions around research will continue to evolve.