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Wednesday, June 20th 2018

Faculty Research Fellows

Lavin Center Affiliated Faculty

Amy E. Randel, Ph.D.

Lavin Center Research Fellow
Associate Professor of Management email:

Amy E. Randel is an assistant professor of management at SDSU, specializing in organizational behavior. She received her B.A. in psychology from Brown University and her Ph.D. in management from the University of California, Irvine. Prior to joining the faculty at SDSU in August 2005, she was on the faculty at Wake Forest University and worked in health care consulting and public relations. Amy teaches classes in organizational behavior, organizational design and change, and interpersonal processes. She is on the editorial board of Group & Organization Management.

Amy's current research interests include identity in organizations, diverse group dynamics, creativity, cross-cultural management, and social capital. She has published in a variety of outlets including Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Organizational Behavior, Creativity Research Journal, Group & Organization Management, Business & Society, and the Academy of Management Best Paper Proceedings. She has received awards for her research such as a Best Paper Based on a Dissertation award from the Academy of Management (Gender and Diversity in Organizations division) and scholarship awards from Wake Forest University's Calloway School of Business & Accountancy.

Overview of the research funded by the Lavin Center:

Successful entrepreneurship often depends on creativity as evidenced by researchers characterizing creativity as an important component of an entrepreneurship process model (e.g., Brazeal & Herbert, 1999). Creative identity is a construct that consists of several facets, including the importance of creativity to an individual's self-concept. This project will examine how creative identity and antecedents to creativity differ for entrepreneurs versus professionals in a large company setting. By studying creative identity within two different samples, it will be possible to obtain variation on characteristics that that distinguish entrepreneurs from other professionals, better understand how creativity differs within these two respondent types, and contribute to research and practice regarding factors that foster creativity among entrepreneurs as compared to professionals employed within large companies.

This study will examine the relationships between creative identity and other variables (e.g., creative-thinking skills and creative self-efficacy) theorized to facilitate creativity in these samples. Better understanding the factors that contribute to an enhanced creative identity will be beneficial for predicting creativity and ensuring improved creative outcomes for both entrepreneurs and other business professionals. On becoming interested in this particular topic:

Diverse work groups often do not realize their potential for creativity and innovation. Why this is the case and what the factors are that account for this has fascinated me. One of the ways that I have explored this issue is by considering a growing base of research that suggests that individuals behave in ways that reflect the identities they hold to be important. It seemed likely that individuals who place a high level of importance on being creativity might be especially likely to be creative. This is what two colleagues (Kimberly Jaussi and Shelley Dionne) and I found in a study that is soon to be published in the Creativity Research Journal. By studying creativity among entrepreneurs, I hope to learn more about creativity from the experiences of those who are known for their strong creativity and to inform practice from the results of this study.

What are the implications of this work for the regional (or other) entrepreneurial community?

This study promises to contribute to the field of entrepreneurship by examining the self-definition of entrepreneurs, which is an area that has been noted as important in the entrepreneurship literature (e.g., Down & Reveley, 2004; Downing, 2005). This study will contribute to entrepreneurship research and practice by examining creativity as an important component of entrepreneurs' self-concepts. The findings are expected to increase what is known about how entrepreneurs differ from employees from larger companies. Further, the results of this study will inform research and practice on how to maximize creative outcomes from entrepreneurs.

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