Table of Contents

Research Companion to Emotion in Organizations

Research Companion to Emotion in Organizations

New Horizons in Management series

Edited by Neal M. Ashkanasy and Cary L. Cooper

This Companion brings together many leading scholars to address a wide range of topics in 38 chapters, across five levels of organizational analysis – including within-person, between-person (individual differences), relationships, groups, and the organization as a whole. Chapters tackle structure and measurement of emotion, antecedents and consequences of positive and negative emotions, including effects on work satisfaction and performance. The expression, recognition, and regulation of emotion and the propagation of mood and emotion in groups are also dealt with. The Companion explores contemporary issues including leadership, organizational climate and culture, as well as organizational change.

Chapter 1: The Structure of Affect: History, Theory, and Implications for Emotion Research in Organizations

Myeong-Gu Seo, Lisa Feldman Barrett and Sirkwoo Jin

Subjects: business and management, organisational behaviour


1 The structure of affect: history, theory, and implications for emotion research in organizations Myeong-Gu Seo, Lisa Feldman Barrett and Sirkwoo Jin Introduction At the dawn of the 21st century, emotion has emerged as a central topic of scientific inquiry about the human condition. Fields with broadly differing epistemological frameworks (e.g., cultural anthropology, philosophy, social psychology, cognitive science, and cognitive and behavioral neuroscience) all study something called ‘emotion’. This proliferation of scientific inquiry on the nature of emotion has spilled over into the field of organizational behavior, witnessing an unprecedented and accelerated increase in interest in various aspects of emotions in organization over the past decades (e.g., Ashkanasy et al., 2000; Fineman, 2000; Fisher & Ashkanasy, 2000; Brief & Weiss, 2002). Nevertheless, the problem of how to understand the structure of human affective experience has remained unresolved (see, Cropanzano et al., 2003). Questions of structure are fundamental to the question of what emotions are and how they should be defined, because structure indicates the basic building blocks of emotional life that supports an inductive science of emotion. To the extent that affective experiences can be reliably assessed and understood, they can be incorporated into our theorizing and research on all the topics that interest us as scholars. Since the time of Wundt (1924), researchers have relied on dimensional models of affect to ground the scientific investigation of emotion. Dimensional models assume that emotions such as anger, sadness, fear and so on, share a...

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