Research Interests: emotion and identity, organizational behavior, work motivation and engagement, work-life and career development
Professor Nancy Rothbard received her A.B. from Brown University and her Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior from the University of Michigan. She is the Deputy Dean and the David Pottruck Professor of Management at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. Prior to joining the faculty at Wharton, she was on faculty at the Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University. Professor Rothbard’s research focuses on the interplay between emotions and engagement in multiple roles. Specifically, she explores how people’s emotional responses to one role or task affect their subsequent engagement in another role or task. She has examined these questions in the context of work and family roles and in the context of multiple tasks that people perform within the work role. Her work has been published in academic journals such as Administrative Science Quarterly, Academy of Management Review, Organization Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Organization Science, and Personnel Psychology. In addition to her academic articles, Professor Rothbard has authored several Harvard Business School case studies. Her teaching cases touch on the topics of leadership, corporate culture, and organizational change. Professor Rothbard received the 2000 Likert Dissertation Award from the University of Michigan. She is also the recipient of the Gerald and Lillian Dykstra Award for Teaching Excellence and the Wharton Teaching Commitment and Curricular Innovation Award, 2010.
Nancy Rothbard, Arianna Beetz (Ulloa), Dana Harari (2021), Balancing the scales: A configurational approach to work-life balance, Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior.
Nancy Rothbard (2018), Friends without benefits: Understanding the dark sides of workplace friendship, Academy of Management Review, forthcoming.
A. Ollier-Malaterre, Nancy Rothbard, Danielle Tussing (Work In Progress), Letting it all hang out? Consequences of online boundary management for individuals and teams.
Nancy Rothbard, Lakshmi Ramarajan, Steffanie L. Wilk (2017), Discordant vs. Harmonious Selves: The Effects of Identity Conflict and Enhancement on Sales Performance in Employee-Customer Interactions, Academy of Management Journal.
Lieke ten Brummelhuis, Nancy Rothbard, Benjamin Uhrich (2017), Beyond Nine to Five: Is Working to Excess Bad for Health?, Academy of Management Discoveries, 3 (3), pp. 262-283.
Amanda O'Neill and Nancy Rothbard (2017), Is Love All You Need? The Effects of Emotional Culture, Suppression, and Work-Family Conflict on Firefighter Risk Taking and Health, Academy of Management Journal, 60 (1). 10.5465/amj.2014.0952
Ariane Ollier-Malaterre and Nancy Rothbard (2015), Social media or social minefield? Surviving in the new cyberspace era, Organization Dynamics.
Adam Grant and Nancy Rothbard (2013), When in doubt, seize the day? Security values, prosocial values, and proactivity under ambiguity, Journal of Applied Psychology, 98, pp. 810-819. 10.1037/a0032873
Abstract: Researchers have suggested that both ambiguity and values play important roles in shaping employees’ proactive behaviors, but have not theoretically or empirically integrated these factors. Drawing on theories of situational strength and values, we propose that ambiguity constitutes a weak situation that strengthens the relationship between the content of employees’ values and their proactivity. A field study of 201 employees and their direct supervisors in a water treatment plant provided support for this contingency perspective. Ambiguity moderated the relationship between employees’ security and prosocial values and supervisor ratings of proactivity. Under high ambiguity, security values predicted lower proactivity, whereas prosocial values predicted higher proactivity. Under low ambiguity, values were not associated with proactivity. We replicated these findings in a laboratory experiment with 232 participants in which we measured proactivity objectively as initiative taken to correct errors: participants with strong security values were less proactive, and participants with strong prosocial values were more proactive, but only when performance expectations were ambiguous. We discuss theoretical implications for research on proactivity, values, and ambiguity and uncertainty.
Anca Metiu and Nancy Rothbard (2013), Task Bubbles, Artifacts, Shared Emotion, and Mutual Focus of Attention: A Comparative Study of the Microprocesses of Group Engagement, Organization Science. 10.1287/orsc.1120.0738
Abstract: Based on a comparative field study of two software development projects, we use ethnographic methods of observation and interview to examine the question of how interdependent individuals develop and maintain mutual focus of attention on a shared task, which we define as the group engagement process. Drawing on Randall Collins’ interaction ritual theory, we identify how mutual focus of attention develops through the presence of a task bubble that focuses attention by creating barriers to outsiders and through the effective use of task-related artifacts. Shared emotion both results from mutual focus of attention and reinforces it. Through our comparison between the two projects, we show that the group engagement process is enabled by factors at the individual (individual engagement), interaction (frequency and informality of interactions), and project (compelling direction of the overall group) levels. Our focus on group interaction episodes as the engine of the group engagement process illuminates what individuals do when they are performing the focal work of the group (i.e., solving problems related to the task at hand) and how they develop and sustain the mutual focus of attention that is required for making collective progress on the task itself. We also show the relationship between the group engagement process and effective problem solving.
MGMT 610 is the first core course in the MBA Program and it cannot be waived. The first week of the fall term (in August) is dedicated to this formative and foundational experience. This course focuses on developing students' knowledge and skill set for teamwork and leadership. It is meant to be an intense immersion experience that draws strongly on the pedagogy of the Wharton Teamwork and Leadership Simulation, a team-based, highly interactive simulation that was custom-designed specifically to allow students to experience the core concepts they learn in this class. The three goals of this course are for students to learn: 1. Leadership behaviors: how to enact the skills that contribute to a team's effective performance. 2. Team dynamics: how to be an effective team member, as well as how to best design work teams; 3. Organizational awareness: understanding organizational culture. Format: A custom-designed Wharton-only simulation is paired with course sessions to deliver a unique learning experience. Classes will include experiental learning combined with debriefings, lectures, readings, class discussion and personal and group performance feedback. This course reflects the realities that informal leadership occurs in teams on an ongoing basis, that being a good team player is a part of leadership, and that many of one's early experiences with leadership will occur while working on teams. Because of the team-based nature of this course, and time intensive nature of this experience, attendance is mandatory for ALL five sessions of this class.
Courses offered of various topics and points of focus, ranging across multiple concentrations of Management, (i.e., Entrepreneurial, Strategy, Organizational Business, etc.).
Special course arranged for Wharton MBA students, focused on global business, management and innovation.
This course is designed to provide students with an understanding of the methodological approaches we commonly think of as qualitative, with special emphasis on ethnography, semi- structured interviews, case studies, content analysis, and mixed-methods research. The course will cover the basic techniques for collecting, interpreting, and analyzing qualitative (i.e. non-numerical) data. In the spring quarter, the course will operate on two interrelated dimensions, one focused on the theoretical approaches to various types of qualitative research, the other focused on the practical techniques of data collection, such as identifying key informants, selecting respondents, collecting field notes and conducting interviews. In the fall semester, the course will operate on two interrelated dimensions, one focused on the theoretical approaches on building arguments and theory from qualitative data, the other focused on the practical techniques of data collection, such as analyzing data, writing, and presenting findings. Note: This class is part of a two-part sequence which focuses on qualitative data collection and analysis. The first of this course, offered in the Spring, focuses on data collection and the second half of the course, offered the following Fall, will focus on qualitative data analysis. Each course is seven weeks long. Students may take either class independently or consecutively.
This seminar-based course, with active discussion and analysis, is required of all first-year doctoral students in Management and open to other Penn students with instructor permission. The purpose of this course is to examine and understand basics in the theory and empirical research in the field of micro organizational behavior and to build an understanding of people's behavior in organizations and across organizations. The course covers a blend of classic and contemporary literature so that we can appreciate the prevailing theories and findings in various areas of organizational behavior. This course covers micro-organizational behavior, focused on topics such as influence/status, virtual teams, job design, organizational culture and socialization, identity in organizations and overall look on where the field of micro-organizational behavior is going.
The purpose of this half-semester course is to examine and understand theory and empirical research in the field of micro-organizational behavior and to build an understanding of people's behavior in organizations. The course covers a blend of classic and contemporary literature to appreciate the prevailing theories and findings in various areas of micro-organizational behavior. We will cover topics such as identity, diversity/inclusion, work design/proactivity, extra-role behaviors, behavioral ethics/organizational justice, and an overall look at where the field of micro-organizational behavior is heading. This is a seminar-based course with active discussion and analysis.
This is a complement course to MGMT 951, and it has the same purpose to examine and understand basics in the theory and empirical research in the field of micro-organizational behavior and to increase our understanding of people's behavior in organizations. To do so, we will cover a blend of classic and contemporary literature so that we can appreciate the prevailing theories and findings in various areas of micro-organizational behavior. In addition, for each topic we will then try to go beyond the existing literature. We will work to increase our understanding by re-framing the research variables, altering the perspective, bringing in new theory, and comparing levels of analysis. The purpose of this course is not meant to be exhaustive, rather it covers approximately half of the organizational behavior literature. For a more complete understanding of the basics of organizational behavior it is mandatory for organizational behavior students to have taken MGMT 951 which covers the remaining topics in basic organizational behavior. However, it is not mandatory to have taken MGMT 951 before MGMT 961 as they cover different sets of topics.
"Learning from Career Histories" Symposium: "Is prior experience always beneficial? Learning from career histories"
For “Managing multiple roles: Work-family policies and individuals’ desires for segmentation.”
For “Investment in work and family roles: A test of identity and utilitarian motives.”
For “Enriching or depleting? The dynamics of engagement in work and family roles.”
For "Mechanisms Linking Work and Family: Clarifying the Relationship Between Work and Family Constructs."
Introduction of new concentrations and majors will prepare future leaders for the evolving global landscape Over its nearly 150 years as the global leader in business education, the Wharton School’s continued curricular evolution remains a cornerstone by which the School’s excellence is sustained. This month, as the University of Pennsylvania’s…Wharton Stories - 09/27/2022