Research Summary


by Amy C. Edmondson


My research focuses on cross-boundary teaming in and between organizations and on the ways leaders enable the kinds of complex collaborations that such teaming generates. I am particularly interested in collaborations focused on innovation in knowledge-intensive industries ranging from healthcare delivery to the built environment. In one stream of my research, I study collaboration among people with diverse expertise undertaking major innovation initiatives. I argue that teaming across industry boundaries is increasingly important in the production of crucial innovations upon which society’s future depends. I find that teaming and learning among diverse experts, while facing high uncertainty, involves significant interpersonal risk. My research explores how people manage these risks, and why it matters that they do, in contexts ranging from the emergency room, to the factory, to the built environment, to the executive suite. A second stream of my research examines how leaders successfully create organizational change and learning in fast-paced, challenging, uncertain industry contexts.