Claudine Gartenberg

Claudine Gartenberg
  • Assistant Professor of Management

Contact Information

  • office Address:

    2035 SH-DH
    3620 Locust Walk
    Philadelphia, PA 19104

Research Interests: corporate strategy; organizational strategy; firm scope; motivation; corporate governance; compensation and pay inequality; corporate purpose

Links: CV, @cmgartenberg, Inaugural Corporate Strategy and Innovation Conference


Claudine Gartenberg is an Assistant Professor of Management at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Her research focuses on corporate purpose and pay inequality, and the implications of both for firm strategy and competitiveness. Her work has been published in top academic journals, including Management Science, Organization Science, and Strategic Management Journal. She is an associate editor at Management Science, and serves on the editorial boards of Strategic Management Journal and Strategy Science.

Professor Gartenberg received a B.A. with honors in Physics from Harvard College, and a D.B.A. and M.B.A. from Harvard Business School, where she graduated as a Baker Scholar and received the Wyss Award for best doctoral research. She joins Wharton from the faculty of NYU Stern School.

Prior to joining academia, Professor Gartenberg was an account manager at a business consulting firm, working with clients such as PG&E, Chevron, Hallmark Cards, Wells Fargo and Bank of America.

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  • Claudine Gartenberg (2022), Purpose-driven firms and sustainability, Handbook on the Business of Sustainability.

    Abstract: Corporate purpose and business sustainability appear to be intrinsically related ideas, and yet there is little research on the nature of this relationship. The chapter begins with a discussion of purpose and two parallel treatments of the topic. The “corporate purpose” treatment, rooted in early 20th century institutionalism, views purpose as a (or, possibly, the) primary differentiator of firms over markets. The “purpose of the corporation” treatment, rooted in a near century-long debate in law and finance on the role of corporations in society, considers purpose as the appropriate objective for corporations. At the confluence of these two treatments lies important implications for the firm: how purpose is determined, how it influences behavior at both the organizational and employee level, and the associated role of leadership. The chapter then considers how these implications intersect with business sustainability. I suggest mechanisms by which purpose and sustainability might be mutually reinforcing, and the conditions under which this might occur. Each of the sections of this chapter concludes with topics for future research.

  • Claudine Gartenberg and Shun Yiu (Under Revision), Corporate Purpose and Acquisitions.

    Abstract: This study analyzes the relationship between acquisitions—a centerpiece of corporate strategy—and employees’ sense of purpose. Using data from more than 1.5 million employees, we find that purpose is substantially weaker in companies following recent acquisitions. This association is driven by unique acquisitions and those with opaque disclosed rationales. We explore the performance implications of this relationship. We first isolate the component of purpose directly attributable to the deal, and then relate this component to subsequent performance. We find that deals associated with stronger purpose outperform, and those with weaker purpose do not. Together, our evidence suggests a possible tension between strategic and motivational determinants of acquisition success: while firms benefit strategically from uniqueness, it may also erode the sense of purpose within firms.

    Description: Revise and Resubmit

  • Claudine Gartenberg and George Serafeim (Under Revision), Corporate Purpose in Public and Private Firms.

    Description: Revise and Resubmit

  • Claudine Gartenberg and Todd Zenger (Under Revision), The Firm as a Subsociety.

    Description: Revise and Resubmit

  • Claudine Gartenberg and Julie Wulf (2020), Competition and Pay Inequality Within and Between Firms, Management Science.

  • Claudine Gartenberg, Steve Blader, Andrea Prat (2019), The Contingent Effect of Management Practices, Review of Economic Studies.

  • Claudine Gartenberg and George Serafeim (2019), 181 Top CEOs Have Realized Companies Need a Purpose Beyond Profit, Harvard Business Review Online.

  • Claudine Gartenberg and George Serafeim (2019), Corporate Purpose and Financial Performance, Organization Science, 30 (1), pp. 1-18.

  • Claudine Gartenberg, Emilie Feldman, Julie Wulf (2018), Pay Inequality and Corporate Divestitures, Strategic Management Journal, 39 (11), pp. 2829-2858.

  • Claudine Gartenberg and Julie Wulf (2017), Pay Harmony: Social Comparison and Performance Compensation in Multi-Business Firms, Organization Science, 28 (1), pp. 39-55.


All Courses

  • MGMT6110 - Managing Est Enterprise

    This course is about managing large enterprises that face the strategic challenge of being the incumbent in the market and the organizational challenge of needing to balance the forces of inertia and change. The firms of interest in this course tend to operate in a wide range of markets and segments, frequently on a global basis, and need to constantly deploy their resources to fend off challenges from new entrants and technologies that threaten their established positions. The class is organized around three distinct but related topics that managers of established firms must consider: strategy, human and social capital, and global strategy.

  • MGMT7820 - Strategic Implementation

    Much more is known about strategy formulation than its implementation, yet valid, sensible strategies often fail because of problems on the implementation side. This course provides you with tools to turn good strategy into successful reality. It covers the choices, structure, and conditions that enable the successful attainment of strategic objectives. Students learn from rigorous academic research on successful implementation, as well as a series of seasoned business leaders who will visit to share their own experience from the front lines.

  • MGMT8910 - Advanced Study-Smgt

  • MGMT9260 - Sem Strat & Org Des

    This half-semester course examines one of the foundational questions in strategy: the role of organizational structure in both supporting and shaping strategy. As Winston Churchill famously said: "We shape our buildings, and afterwards our buildings shape us." This course examines this proposition from two traditions, the "institutional economics" and "information processing" schools of organizational design. We will examine foundational works from both schools, such as Coase, Williamson, Simon, March, and others, and then proceed to recent work in the area. Some of the questions that we will explore in the class are: why do firms exist? What determines their boundaries? What determines formal and informal structures within firms? How does the strategic context shape the answers to these questions? How might the nature of the firm and its boundaries relate to innovation, human capital, and knowledge creation? The aim of this class is to provide students with a grounding in the fundamental questions and contributions in this area, and to spark ideas for research in their own graduate work.

Awards and Honors

  • Wharton Teaching Excellence Award, 2020
  • Ralph Gomory Best Industry Studies Award, Runner Up, 2018
  • SMS Best Paper Award Nomination (voluntarily opted out once paper was accepted for publication), 2018
  • Wyss Award for Excellence in Doctoral Research, Harvard Business School (one of 4 recipients across all departments), 2010
  • Financial Management Association, Best Paper Awards Semifinalist, “Did fair valuation depress equity values during the 2008 financial crisis?” with George Serafeim., 2010
  • Harvard University, Derek Bok Center Teaching Award, (rated 5.0 / 5.0 by students versus division average of 4.0 / 5.0)., 2008
  • Harvard Business School, Baker Scholar (top 5% of class)., 2006

In the News

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Latest Research

Claudine Gartenberg (2022), Purpose-driven firms and sustainability, Handbook on the Business of Sustainability.
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In the News

How Pay Inequality Affects the Bottom Line

Pay inequality is a persistent problem that is getting more exposure than ever before. Recent Wharton research examines how inequality affects individual workers and entire companies. Read More

Knowledge at Wharton - 10/17/2017
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