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Nancy J. Adler

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Nancy J. Adler

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Nancy J. Adler

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Nancy J. Adler

Few of us question the need for wisdom, yet to date academic scholarship has rarely addressed the role that wisdom plays in supporting organizational processes capable of addressing the world’s most demanding societal challenges. This chapter explores the nature of pragmatic wisdom. The overarching focus is on those understandings that can be used to make a positive difference in the world. The chapter uses the founding of a new international development initiative, Uniterra, to highlight the need for and influence of wisdom in organizational processes and outcomes, not as a panacea, but as a necessity. The chapter therefore investigates the wisdom needed to create and maintain various aspects of global partnering. Because the chapter focuses on pragmatic wisdom, it also explores the concepts of hope and courage, for without hope and courage, wisdom could never move from conceptualization to action. Beyond discussing wisdom in the context of a specific situation, it attempts to offer possibilities to experience wisdom via a series of indigenous wisdom sayings (proverbs) from many of the world’s more pragmatic wisdom traditions.
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Nancy J. Adler and Oliver Laasch

Nancy Adler is one of the most influential scholars in cross-cultural management and leadership. The exchange documented in this chapter showcases the value of Nancy’s contributions to responsible management and leadership. The chapter starts with discussing the relationship between responsible leadership and responsible management, and then moves on to explore key concerns in both fields. Themes addressed include the importance of being able to walk away from a job that requires irresponsibility; the distinction between responsibility, irresponsibility, and ‘aresponsibility’; a comparative perspective on (ir)responsibility; the role of women leaders and diversity; and the importance of beauty in responsible leadership and management. A commentary follows each of Nancy’s responses that creates a connection to the extant responsible management discussion while highlighting related opportunities for future research.

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Archie B. Carroll, Nancy J. Adler, Henry Mintzberg, François Cooren, Roy Suddaby, R. Edward Freeman and Oliver Laasch

What is responsible management? The responsible management field so far has been looking for a convergent one-size-fits-all answer to this question. Conversely, we choose to ask the grammatically incorrect, but generatively paradoxical question of “What are responsible management?” In response, this chapter features a rich potluck of six academic pioneers’ distinct conceptualizations of responsible management: Responsible management as responsibility management (Archie B. Carroll); as responsible leadership (Nancy J. Adler); as rebalancing society through management (Henry Mintzberg); as response-able situation management (François Cooren); as human(e) management and institutional character (Roy Suddaby); and as stakeholder harmonization (R. Edward Freeman). Each conceptualization is followed by a brief stylized interpretation of each pioneer’s perspective that links it to the extant responsible management literature. Finally, these responsible management conceptualizations are juxtaposed along the four categories of managerial agency, responsibility managed, sphere of responsibility, and management process. This juxtaposition serves to highlight each perspective’s distinctive features, and all perspectives’ joint contribution to a multifaceted understanding that can guide future study of responsible management.