How Organizing Matters for Societal Grand Challenges

Research output: Contributions to collected editions/worksChapterpeer-review


Societal grand challenges have moved from a marginal concern to a mainstream issue within organization and management theory. How diverse forms of organizing help tackle – or reinforce – grand challenges has become centrally important. In this introductory paper, we take stock of the contributions to the volume on Organizing for Societal Grand Challenges and identify three characteristics of grand challenges that require further scholarly attention: their interconnectedness, fluidity, and paradoxical nature. We also emphasize the need to expand our methodological repertoire and reflect upon our practices as a scholarly community.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOrganizing for societal grand challenges
EditorsAli Aslan Gümüsay, Emilio Marti, Hanna Trittin-Ulbrich, Christopher Wickert
Number of pages14
Place of PublicationBingley
PublisherEmerald Publishing Limited
Publication date29.03.2022
ISBN (Print)978-1-83909-829-1
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-83909-826-0, 978-1-83909-828-4
Publication statusPublished - 29.03.2022

Bibliographical note

This volume has been in many ways a collective effort. It emerged from meetings of our network “Grand Challenges & New Forms of Organizing,” funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) from 2018 to 2021. This network allowed us to come together and through these encounters build a common research agenda around grand challenges. We remain theoretically, methodologically, and epistemologically diverse – but we retain a mutual passion for engaging with research on grand challenges. We are grateful to all network members (Marlen de la Chaux, Anja Danner-Schröder, Katharina Dittrich, Leonhard Dobusch, Sascha Friesike, Thomas Gegenhuber, Michael Grothe-Hammer, Ali Aslan Gümüsay, Arne Kroeger, Emilio Marti, Dennis Schoeneborn, Elke Schüßler, Hannah Trittin-Ulbrich, Matthias Wenzel, Christopher Wickert), speakers (Tima Bansal, Joep Cornelissen, Jana Costas, Frank de Bakker, Laura Marie Edinger-Schons, Joel Gehman, Jennifer Howard-Grenville, Johanna Mair, Juliane Reinecke) and affiliates (Blagoy Blagoev, Laura Claus, Boukje Cnossen, Dror Etzion, Helen Etchanchu, Corinna Frey-Heger, Daniel Geiger, Franziska Günzel-Jensen, Fabian Hattke, Ramona Kordesch, Gorgi Krlev, Renate Meyer, Mareike Möhlmann, Madeleine Rauch, Simone Schiller-Merkens, Andreas G. Scherer, Nicole Siebold and Iben Sandal Stjerne), who have shared insights that have in turn been woven into this volume. We would also like to thank the Research in the Sociology of Organizations editor Michael Lounsbury for his support and Sonja Köhne for her assistance in organizing the volume.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Ali Aslan Gümüsay, Emilio Marti, Hannah Trittin-Ulbrich and Christopher Wickert. Published by Emerald Publishing Limited.

    Research areas

  • Grand challenges, Impact, Management, Methodology, Organization theory, Research, Teaching
  • Management studies