Message from the BPS Division Chair
I am pleased to provide you with a brief update on the BPS Division. The BPS Division’s membership currently numbers 5142, making it the second largest division within the Academy of Management, and many benefits and opportunities come with that size. The number of members in the division is down a bit after reaching a high of around 5400 in 2010; by comparison, division membership totaled 3150 in 2000 and 2611 in 1995. The financial position and management of the division are strong, and the rise and strength of international participation has been a very notable feature in division awards, leadership and workshops, and submissions.
The conference in Boston also had a variety of special events and features for the division. First, Anita McGahan (Toronto U.) was awarded the All-Academy Distinguished Educator Award, and Henry Mintzberg (McGill U.) received the Irwin Outstanding Educator Award. Congratulations to both of them for all of their contributions to management education and strategic management.
Thanks to the efforts of Rajshree Agarwal (U. of Maryland), the program in Boston was a great success. Thank you Rajshree for all your work! As she reported in Boston, we received just under eight hundred submissions (737 papers and 48 symposia, with 61 percent of authors based outside the US). This represents a 7.4 percent increase in the number of paper submissions. There had been some concern about the recent decline in the number of symposium submissions, but this year the symposium submissions increased from 33 to 48 (by 45%). Several years ago we had symposium submissions as high as in the 50s and 60s, so let’s continue this trend. Please continue to submit innovative proposals for consideration for the 2013 conference and beyond.
The PDWs continue to offer a diverse set of innovative sessions in the pre-conference period, and they get rave reviews. This year it was especially notable that there has been nearly a doubling of PDW submissions, so we expect to continue to see really interesting workshops, just as these submissions become more competitive. Based upon the expressed need for offerings that link teaching and research, emphasis has been given to the development of teaching PDWs. When members were asked about their preferences for new initiatives, another area yielding high priority was ‘attention to junior faculty.’ As one new service for this set of scholars, a new paper development PDW specifically geared for junior faculty was initiated this year and was well received. Special thanks go to Chris Zott (IESE) for developing the PDW program at the Boston conference.
There are several other innovations and initiatives recently undertaken or underway that I would like to highlight, and these also grow out of members’ suggestions received during the division’s five-year review (located here). The Executive Committee continues to look for new opportunities to build community and engagement within the BPS division. In the past few years, examples include the use of tracks to build “conferences within a conference” and research communities, social events geared to introduce volunteer opportunities within the division and to connect members within tracks, and conference sessions designed to bring together the BPS community as a whole. In the coming year, we will be exploring opportunities to add to these events and activities as well as to reach out to new academy and BPS members.
If you would like to start getting involved in the activities of the division, there are some simple yet important ways to do so. A couple years ago, the reviewer participation rate for BPS was lower than most other divisions. The number of reviewers has improved (from 997 in 2010 to 1135 in 2011 and 1133 in 2012), and the improvement in the number of reviewers per submission also limits the number of review requests and need for emergency reviewers. It is also great that so many first-time reviewers have volunteered -- over 30% of total reviewers in each of the last two years. By volunteering to serve as a reviewer, you can help a lot with the continued development of the division. The division tracks the frequency and quality of members’ reviews and uses this information when suggesting nominations for divisional committees. We also welcome and encourage nominations for committee members and division officers, so please consider making nominations this year.
Another area where members have expressed interest is in enhancing the division’s website. Thanks to the efforts of many people, the upgrades to the website’s design and content have improved our web presence for members and those interested in learning more about the BPS division and strategic management in general. In the coming months, the website will be transitioning to an AOM platform. As this takes place, we will also be looking to enhance website management and content delivery, and more details will follow on these enhancements.
Finally, many thanks to all of you serving the division in so many different ways -- it is a huge team effort on a global scale. Already looking ahead to 2013? The annual meeting will be held in Lake Buena Vista (Orlando), FL, August 9-13. Thank you for your support of BPS.
Jeffrey J. Reuer