Call for Papers for New Horizons in Managerial and Organizational Cognition Volume 5 (2021 publication)

We have published the call for papers for the 2021 volume of New Horizons in Managerial and Organizational Cognition. This is the fifth anniversary volume, which will have the tentative title “Thinking about Cognition”. Papers will be published in print book format, as well as digital format by Emerald. The call for papers can be downloaded here.

Dimensionering en ommer

Denne uge skrev jeg følgende debatindlæg til Dagbladet, som blev bragt 20. marts 2019:

“For nyligt udtalte uddannelses- og forskningsminister Tommy Ahlers meget sympatisk til Dagbladet at studerende skal vælge uddannelse med ”passion”, og ”ikke ud fra jobstatistik eller andre menneskers forventninger” (9. marts 2019). Jeg er rørende enig med Ministeren, men det tror jeg hverken hans eget embedsværk, eller hans politiske forgængere fra rød og blå blok er.

De har nemlig de sidste år bygget et system på antagelser om hvad samfundet har brug for, fremfor hvad individet har lyst til. Et system som bruger (gammel) jobstatistik til at tvinge studerende ud i den ene frem for den anden uddannelse. Dette blev hamret fast med syvtommerssøm da den ledighedsbaserede dimensionering af videregående uddannelser blev iværksat i efteråret 2015.

Ideen med dimensionering var at sætte loft på optagelsen til en lang række uddannelser, baseret på historiske ledighedstal. Som i det gamle Sovjet, fik universiteter kvoter fra ministeriet som skulle overholdes. Men grundlæggende baserer hele dimensioneringstanken sig på to helt banale fejlagtige antagelser.

Den første fejl er at man i ministeriet antager at en studerende ender med at benytte sin uddannelse, direkte, i både sit første job, og resten af arbejdslivet. Dette er sjældent tilfældet. For det første ender dimittender i alle mulige forskellige jobs rundt omkring i det private og det offentlige, som nogle gange relaterer sig direkte, andre gange kun indirekte, eller ikke i det hele taget, til den uddannelse de har valgt. Sådan er det i et frit og åbent arbejdsmarked. For det andet vil den gennemsnitlige dimittend i dag blive på arbejdsmarkedet i 45-55 år. I den tid vil det være helt normalt at skifte både arbejdsgiver og funktion mange gange. Høj eller lav efterspørgsel efter ens uddannelse lige præcis i dag behøver man derfor ikke gå så meget op i.

Den anden fejl er at man antager at kunne forudse hvad arbejdsmarkedet har brug for i fremtiden, ud fra jobstatistik fra fortiden. Det luget lidt for meget af planlægningsøkonomi. Optagelseskvoter på bachelor i dag, og dermed hvilke dimittender skal udklækkes som kandidater tidligst i 2024, baseres på arbejdsløshedstal fra 2005 til 2014. Man benytter altså op til 15 år gamle tal til at detailplanlægge ”dimittendproduktionen” mindst 5 år frem i tiden. En 20-25 års planlægningshorisont. Sandheden er at hverken politikkere, embedsmænd, eller universitetsledelser, har en jordisk chance for at forudse hvordan samfund, teknologi, og det danske arbejdsmarked ser ud mange år ud i fremtiden.

Dimensioneringen er en ommer…”

Resource Orchestration and Integration

What happens if you hire great people, invest in great technology, secure proper finances, yet there is poor integration between all these resources? The recently developed resource orchestration theory studies the processes by which managers handle resources to create competitive advantages. According to this theory, it is the way that resources interact with each other that results in advantage. In our brand new study, together with colleagues Stuart Barnes and Jan Mattsson, we discuss and develop a scale and methodology for measuring resource integration, i.e. the alignment, or fit between resources. We see the approach introduced in this paper both in the context of further research on integration and its consequences and as a practical tool for companies. Best of all, this paper was published as open access – so anyone can read and download it for free.

Read it online here: https://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/full/10.1108/IJOA-05-2018-1427

Or download it here: Sund Barnes Mattsson 2018 IJOA-05-2018-1427

Interview in Pamplona

I was recently interviewed by prof. Sandra Cavero at the Universidad Publica de Navarra, where I was a visiting professor this fall.

 

 

Where are the Students?

Student absenteeism represents a growing problem in higher education, yet one that many academics and university administrations refuse to face. Some use the excuse of Humboldtian ideals of academic freedom to maintain that students should be allowed to choose whether or not to attend classes. Yet, mounting evidence suggests a) that absenteeism is rampant, and b) that students benefit from attending. This last finding should not be surprising, as it simply demonstrates that the learning activities that take place in university actually result in superior learning than staying home to read a book. This is as it should be. In our recent paper on this issue we bring further evidence for the positive attendance effect, and argue that universities should consider adopting relevant attendance policies where this makes sense.

Read the full paper here: Sund & Bignoux 2018 Final

Has Higher Education Policy become too One-Sided?

In a recent paper co-authored with a group of former students, we use critical discourse analysis to trace the development of higher education policy discourse in Denmark from the late 1970s until today. We find that the discourse has moved from a pluralistic one embracing not only the economic benefits of education, but also emphasizing on democracy, citizenship, and equality, towards a predominantly economic one, focused squarely on notions of globalization and competitiveness in a knowledge society. Are politicians neglecting all the wider benefits of education in their quest to satisfy the job market?

Read the full paper here: Political discourse on higher education in Denmark from enlightened citizen to homo economicus

Business Model Innovation in the Media Industry

Together with PhD student and former media business executive Henrik Jensen I have been studying how business models are changed by incumbent firms. Some of the results have now been published in an article in Journal of Media Business Studies. Digital entrants have changed the competitive landscape for advertisers and media. Over the past decade, media agencies have grown more rapidly than the media market as a whole, securing a larger share of the value generated in the advertising industry. We develop a process model describing how these agencies have altered their business models over a decade. We discuss three separate stages in this innovation process, labelled business model innovation (BMI) awareness, business model exploration, and business model exploitation. We find and document how different building blocks of the business model are a focal point of innovation in each stage of the BMI process. Our findings offer a way for the media industry to understand the transformation of media agencies. The full text can be found here: Jensen & Sund 2017 Final.

Symposium on Methods in Cognition Research

At the 2018 Academy of Management Meeting in Chicago, I will be organizing a panel symposium on “Methodological Challenges and Advances in  Managerial and Organizational Cognition”. The symposium is sponsored by both the Managerial and Organizational Cognition and Research Methods divisions of the Academy, and I am already looking forward to great discussions with my fellow organizers and panelists: Gerard Hodgkinson, Mark Healey, Karen Nokes, Daniella Laureiro Martinez, and Robert Galavan. The panel follows in the heels of the recently published book of the same name. The book and its various chapters can be found at this link: https://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/book/10.1108/S2397-52102017