In today’s climate of recurrent economic and financial crises, institutional instability, and sudden and dramatic geopolitical changes, the study of organizational resilience has become critical. Organizations and their members continuously confront a wide range of adverse events. While the majority of these events occur frequently, and trigger routine responses, others pose significant threats to organizational adaptation and survival. These severe adversities are experienced by individuals and organizations in terms of high stresses and strains. Scholars and practitioners report that the typical response to such pressures is a rigid one, characterized by the narrowing of knowledge sharing, the tightening of control, and conservation of resources. However, some individuals and organizations develop the ability to recover quickly from high-impact disruptions, and even to thrive in such conditions. Why some organizations and individuals exhibit a rigid, maladaptive response to adversity while others adapt and flourish remains uncertain.
The positive adjustments in responses to challenging situations have been studied under the concept of organizational resilience. Organizational resilience is not a fixed trait that can be deterministically found in some extraordinary individuals or organizations. Rather, it is a purposefully developed set of practices and processes that help individuals and organizations alike cope with adverse situations, emerging with a greater repertoire of skills and knowledge. While, developing organizational resilience does not guarantee that adverse situations will be overcome, it maximizes the probability of a successful adaptive resolution.
In the face of recurrent economic, political and financial crises, examining how individuals, groups, and/or organizations adapt and develop becomes critical. Studies of organizational resilience should also take into consideration the cognitive, behavioural and contextual dynamics that constitute resilient responses. Finally, this view of organizing resilience should focus not only on individual, group, and organizational practices, but also on aspects of resilience affecting the broader society.
The 7th LAEMOS Colloquium aims to share empirical and theoretical research that examines organizational resilience in Latin America, Europe and beyond. Sub-theme proposals may address, but are not limited to, the following themes:
Practices and dynamics for resilience: we look for sub-themes that address questions related to how specific practices and dynamics favour resilience in everyday organizing.
Entrepreneurship and resilience: Entrepreneurs face a unique constellation of challenges associated with the newness of their ideas, which renders them particularly prone to failure. How do they overcome these continuous pressures?
Creativity and resilience: In confronting severe adverse situations, individuals, groups and organizations must draw upon different resources and combine them creatively. How do they circumvent instinctive rigid responses to adopt more resilient strategies? What are the conditions that enable such resilient responses?
Resilience in an institutional and cultural context: The processes of developing resilience may differ across sectors, cultures, and regions. How do different institutional landscapes influence resilience? To what extent does the practice of resilience in deprived contexts carry lessons for well-resourced areas and institutions? We particularly welcome sub-themes addressing differences between Latin American countries.
Ethics and resilience: Adverse situations condition not only the range of behavioural responses, but also the underlying ethical principles that inform those responses. How do adverse situations create justifications for ethical trade-offs? How do they reaffirm certain ethical principles? We welcome sub-themes exploring the recursive relationship among adversity, ethics, behaviours, and resilience.
The time dimension: How do adverse events affect the perception of time? How do resilient responses to adverse situations navigate the tension between short-term stopgap solutions and long-term adaptation?
Resilience and trust: Political, social and economic crises erode individuals’ trust in institutions and established processes; however, resilient organizations are able to maintain high levels of trust. What is the role of trust in the development of resiliency?
Social movements and resilience: In an institutional void, social movements may provide the necessary resources and structure to develop resilience. What roles have social movements played in informing resilient responses in such contexts?
Sub-theme proposals: May 1, 2017
Abstract submission (1.000 words): September 15, 2017
Notification of acceptance: October 15, 2017
Submission of full paper (6.000 words): March 1, 2018
Sub-theme proposals of about 500 words should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. The proposals should be in English, including a cover page with the sub-theme’s title and the names, affiliations and email addresses of the convening team. They should delimit a suggested domain and provide brief bios of the convenors. We encourage teams to involve scholars from different institutions and continents, as well as at different stages of their academic career. An international academic committee will evaluate all proposals.