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  • Webinar: Research In Progress II-2022 "How do AI and alter egos develop professional identities and adapt organizational design?"

Webinar: Research In Progress II-2022 "How do AI and alter egos develop professional identities and adapt organizational design?"

  • 08 Dec 2022
  • 9:00 AM - 10:30 AM (EST)
  • Zoom Webinar
  • 74


  • European Organisation Design Forum Members
  • Organization Design Forum Members

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Research in Progress Webinar

How do alter egos and artificial intelligence develop professional identities and adapt organizational design?

Thursday, December 8th, 2022 at 9AM EST

In this ODC “Research in Progress” (RiP) webinar, two PhD students—Bianca Crivelini Eger (HEC Paris) and Sabita Khadgi Sørensen (Southern Denmark University)—working on research at the intersection of organization learning and design will present their working papers on how alter egos and artificial intelligence develop professional identities and adapts organizational designs. The two presentations (each about 20 mins) will be followed by a commentary by Professors Özgecan Koçak (Emory) and Luigi Marengo (LUISS). The webinar will end with feedback/comments from the participants. Please see below for the abstracts of the papers and the bios of the presenters.

Dancing with my Second Self: A model of professional identity development through intrapersonal vicarious learning (by Bianca Crivelini Egger and Daniel Newark)

In this paper, we introduce a process model of professional identity development through intrapersonal vicarious learning. Building on an ethnography of working professionals in Milan, Italy who also perform as drag queens, we describe how an individual’s Second Self – a kind of alter ego – can facilitate the exploration of professional identity attributes that are then transferred to their professional identity. Central to this process is the adoption of a cognitive attitude of compartmentalization. Rather than seeing their drag queen existence as an identity within their Primary Self, these individuals see it instead as a separate, foreign, Second Self.  This subjective perception of separateness and otherness reduces and postpones pressures to make sense of, find consistency in, or integrate the Second Self’s thoughts, behaviors, and self-conceptions with the Primary Self and its corresponding identities.  In turn, this reduced pressure for coherence and integration grants the individual more freedom to explore experiences, behaviors, and interpretations that may otherwise be avoided or curtailed were they seen as needing to correspond to, or be incorporated into, the Primary Self.  Once these novel identity attributes emerge and develop, our process model describes how they can ultimately be transferred to an individual's professional identity.

Hybrid Human-Machine Activities in the Danish Tax Agency: Lessons for Organization Design (by Sabita Khagdi Sørenson, Michael Christensen, and Thorbjørn Knudsen)

The purpose of this study is to discover how combinations of human and algorithmic screeners can be expected to do better than each working alone. We document detailed observations from an inductive case study, which, over several years, explored evolving hybrid human-machine activities employed to audit taxpayers at the Danish Tax Agency. Our results provide rich evidence on the phenomenon of augmentation that support findings and lessons from prior research. In this regard our results indicate that reducing ambiguity in human-machine partnerships may also reduce gains from exploration. Our results also provide novel insights. Based on the rich view on augmentation that our case study provides, we identify a pathway from mutual adaptation between people and algorithms to adaptation at the organizational level, which has escaped prior research. This finding suggests a critical lesson for theory and practice of organization design: learning in human-machine partnerships will inevitably change the properties of any organization, whether ill-designed or well-designed. 

Bios of Presenters

Bianca Crivelini Eger                       

Bianca is a PhD candidate in the management department of HEC Paris and a lawyer. Her research focuses on identity, learning, and liminality, with a particular interest in questions about the porousness of borders between one’s multiple identities. For her PhD dissertation, Bianca is investigating how holding multiple identities can affect exploration and learning processes. She uses ethnography and qualitative methods. As a lawyer, Bianca takes on cases and advocacy campaigns on issues regarding women, minority rights, and immigration. Bianca received her J.D. from the Catholic University of Milan and her LL.M. from Stanford Law School, where she also worked as a researcher on impact investing and strategic philanthropy.

Sabita Khadgi Sørensen

Sabita is a PhD fellow at the Strategic Organizational Design (SOD) group of Southern Denmark University (SDU) Department of Business and Management, with especial interest in understanding the implications of algorithms and AI in organizational decision-making. Her main interest is to explore and understand how decision-making processes can be designed to improve the screening efficiency of real-world organizations (e.g., improve efficiency of the public organizations to screen citizens under resource constraints). I am currently working on “Design of human-machine interactions (HMI) to improve screening efficiency of public organizations to detect noncompliance under capacity constraints. 

Özgecan Koçak

Özgecan Koçak (pronounced as ohz-gay-john ko-chuck) is associate professor of Organization & Management at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School. She holds a Ph.D. in organizational behavior from the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University. Prior to joining the faculty at Emory in 2017, Koçak held positions at Columbia Business School and Sabanci University (in Istanbul, Turkey). She does research in the fields of organization theory and strategy, focusing on how shared understandings (such as communication codes, categorization systems, and identity schema) emerge and shape behavior in organizations and markets.

Luigi Marengo

Luigi Marengo is professor of Economics in the Department of Business and Management of LUISS University in Rome. Before joining LUISS he was professor and Dean of the School of Social Sciences at Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna in Pisa. He graduated at the University of Torino (Italy) and got his PhD with the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU), Sussex University, UK. His main research interests are evolutionary economics, organization theory, complexity, technological change. He has published several articles in Organization Science, Research Policy, Journal of Industrial Economics, Industrial and Corporate Change, Strategy Science, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Journal of Economic Psychology, Organization Studies, and several other journals and collective books.

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Registration closes 7th December, 2022 at 10 am (eastern time)

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