Organizations & Processes of Organizing in Society (OPOS)

Research in the Department of Organization Sciences is organized in the OPOS― Organizations and Processes of Organizing in Society—Research Programme. We are currently in the process of developing OPOS towards the central mission of advancing understanding of processes of organizing by examining these processes through the lens of organizations as interdependent systems. Interdependence plays an important role for internal organizational processes (cooperation and conflict at the micro-level, between coworkers, and at the meso-level, between teams and departments), but also for external organizational processes (i.e. the macro-level: the way in which organizations cooperate and compete within their environment). Researchers in the department study topics related to interdependence within three Research Groups: Cooperation and Conflict between Individuals and within Teams (B. Beersma); Networks and Institutions (P. Groenewegen), and Change and Identity (I. Drori). The three groups are interconnected by intergroup collaboration of researchers in the department.

Cooperation and Conflict between Individuals and within Teams
The Cooperation and Conflict between Individuals and within Teams Research Group focuses on cooperation and competition in organizations, with a specific focus on team performance and conflict management. Researchers use both quantitative and qualitative methods to answer research questions related to organizational behavior at the micro- and meso-level (individuals and teams in organizations), and particularly about how organizational institutions and the identity of organizational employees affect organizational behavior, and are in turn affected by such behavior. Bianca Beersma is the chair of this research group. Staff members in this research group are Dick de Gilder, Cathy van Dyck, Maria Dijkstra, Ed Sleebos, and Yvette Taminiau.

Networks and Institutions
The Networks and Institutions Research Group focuses on institutional dynamics and arrangements, as well as collaboration in a network perspective. The group aims to combine qualitative and network and other analytic methods with new digital  methods for social research. For the approach to networks we combine methods that are close as possible to the experience of employees in organizations, members of communities or interorganizational collaboration. Peter Groenewegen is the chair of this research group. Staff members in this research group are Kees Boersma, Julie Ferguson, Christine Moser and Jeroen Wolbers.

Change and Identity
The Change and Identity Research Group engages in research that reflects the interrelations between  organizational identity and processes that influence how organizations and groups are changing. The group’s members study various organizational fields and  explore diverse social issues that influence the way we participate in social, economic and civil life. We study  issues of  sensemaking, time, higher education, knowledge, boundaries, legitimacy, environmental sustainability,  public-private collaboration, critical management, management of mega-infrastructure projects  and social entrepreneurship. Researchers in the group are  using multiple methods with an emphasis on inductive and ethnographic methods. Israel Drori is the chair of this research group. Staff members in this research group are: Peter van den Besselaar, Frans Kamsteeg, Sytze Kingma, Alfons Marrewijk, Antoine van Nistelrooij, Ida Sabelis, Christine Teelken, Marcel Veenswijk, Harry Wels and Sierk Ybema.



Some current research projects are:

Emergency foto website research


PhD programmes


PhD students make an important contribution to the research in the Department of Organization Science. In recent years, some of our PhD graduates have been successful at publishing in major scientific journals. In the future we will be looking to offer talented and enthusiastic aspiring PhD candidates the opportunity to join our research team. 

Students interested in applying for our PhD programme should contact the management teamempty to find out what opportunities currently exist for research proposals and grants. PhD students usually complete their doctoral dissertation within four years at the Department. However, sometimes it is also possible for candidates to combine their PhD with teaching responsibilities, completing the dissertation in up to five years.

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