Bio


Tenured Associate Professor of Organizational Behavior from 2003 to 2013. Transitioned to adjunct professor in 2013 after a severe stroke in 2010.

Debra Meyerson conducts research in five areas: a) gender and race relations in organizations, specifically individual and organizational strategies of change aimed at removing inequities and fostering productive inter-group relations; b) the role of philanthropic organizations as intermediaries in fostering change within educational institutions; c) leadership and entrepreneurship in education; d) going to scale in the charter school field; and e) accessibility and the construction (and destruction) of work-life boundaries through communication technologies. Debra worked with Harvard Business School Press to publish Tempered Radicals, which provides an in depth look into how one can create positive change in the workplace without division or strife.

Following a stroke in 2010, Debra is now initiating research into the experience of stroke survivors in the rehabilitation process, the impact of gender and socioeconomic background on that process and its impact on a survivor's sense of identity.

Academic Appointments


  • Adjunct Professor, Graduate School of Education

Administrative Appointments


  • Consulting Professor, Stanford University (2013 - Present)
  • Associate Professor of Education, Stanford University (2003 - 2013)
  • Visiting Professor of Organizational Behavior, Graduate School of Business, Stanford University (1999 - 2002)
  • Visiting Professor of Organizational Behavior, Center for Work, Technology, and Organization, School of Engineering, Stanford University (1998 - 2002)
  • Professor of Management, Center for Gender in Organizations, Graduate School of Management, Simmons College (1997 - 2002)
  • Visiting Assistant Professor of Organizational Behavior, Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley (1994 - Present)
  • Visiting Assistant Professor of Organizational Behavior, Graduate School of Business, Stanford University (1994 - 1996)
  • Assistant Professor of Organizational Behavior, University of Michigan Business School (1990 - 1994)

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations


  • Advisory Board, The Girls Middle School (2014 - Present)
  • Board of Directors, Pacific Stroke Association (2014 - Present)
  • Board of Directors, Bay Area Women's Sports Initiative (BAWSI) (2013 - Present)

Program Affiliations


  • Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

Professional Education


  • Ph.D., Stanford University, Organizational Behavior (1989)
  • M.S., MIT, Management (1980)
  • B.S., MIT, Management (1979)

Research Interests


  • Diversity and Identity
  • Educational Policy
  • Gender Issues
  • Leadership and Organization
  • School Reform

Current Research and Scholarly Interests


In addition to continued work on scaling in charter schools, prompted by her stroke in 2010, Debra is now initiating research into the experience of stroke survivors in the rehabilitation process. Specifically, she plans to explore the impact of gender and socioeconomic background on the rehabilitation process and the impact of the process on a survivor's sense of identity. To do so she plans conduct qualitative interviews with survivors, professional caregivers -- physical, occupational and speech therapists -- and caregiving family and friends.

Projects


  • Identity Theft: Rediscovering Ourselves after Stroke (10/1/2014 - Present)

    A book dedicated to initiating research into the experience of stroke survivors in the rehabilitation process. Specifically, this book plans to explore the impact of gender and socioeconomic background on the rehabilitation process and the impact of the process on a survivor's sense of identity. This research includes conducting qualitative interviews with survivors, professional caregivers -- physical, occupational and speech therapists -- and caregiving family and friends.

    Location

    Portola Valley, California

    For More Information:

2019-20 Courses


All Publications


  • IdentityTheft: Rediscovering Ourselves After Stroke Meyerson, D. E., Zuckerman, D. Andrews Mcmeel. 2019
  • Getting to scale: Ideas, opportunities, and resources in the early diffusion of the charter management organization, 1999–2006 Teachers College Record Quinn, R., Oelberger, C., Meyerson, D. 2016; 118 (9): 1-44
  • Beyond Grantmaking: Philanthropic Foundations as Agents of Change and Institutional Entrepreneurs NONPROFIT AND VOLUNTARY SECTOR QUARTERLY Quinn, R., Tompkins-Stange, M., Meyerson, D. 2014; 43 (6): 950-968
  • Power beyond the purse: Philanthropic foundations as agents of social change Using a positive lens to explore social change and organizations: Building a theoretical and research foundation Meyerson, D., Wernick, L. 2012: 91-112
  • E-mail as a Source and Symbol of Stress ORGANIZATION SCIENCE Barley, S. R., Meyerson, D. E., Grodal, S. 2011; 22 (4): 887-906
  • An organizational approach to undoing gender: The unlikely case of offshore oil platforms RESEARCH IN ORGANIZATIONAL BEHAVIOR: AN ANNUAL SERIES OF ANALYTICAL ESSAYS AND CRITICAL REVIEWS, VOL 30 Ely, R. J., Meyerson, D. E. 2010; 30: 3-34
  • Preparing Principals for a Changing World Darling-Hammond, L. Jossey Bass. 2010
  • Rocking the Boat: How Tempered Radicals Effect Change Without Making Trouble Meyerson, D. E. Harvard Business School Press. 2008
  • Tempered radicals as institutional change agents: The case of advancing gender equity at the University of Michigan Harv. JL & Gender Meyerson, D., Tompkins, M. 2007; 30: 303
  • Disrupting gender, revising leadership Women and leadership: The state of play and strategies for change Meyerson, D., Ely, R., Wernick, L. 2007: 453-473
  • Preparing School Leaders for a Changing World: Lessons from Exemplary Leadership Development Programs. School Leadership Study. Final Report. Stanford Educational Leadership Institute Darling-Hammond, L., LaPointe, M., Meyerson, D., Orr, M. T., Cohen, C. 2007
  • Rethinking political correctness HARVARD BUSINESS REVIEW Ely, R. J., Meyerson, D. E., Davidson, M. N. 2006; 84 (9): 78-?

    Abstract

    Legal and cultural changes over the past 40 years ushered unprecedented numbers of women and people of color into companies' professional ranks. Laws now protect these traditionally underrepresented groups from blatant forms of discrimination in hiring and promotion. Meanwhile, political correctness has reset the standards for civility and respect in people's day-to-day interactions. Despite this obvious progress, the authors' research has shown that political correctness is a double-edged sword. While it has helped many employees feel unlimited by their race, gender, or religion,the PC rule book can hinder people's ability to develop effective relationships across race, gender, and religious lines. Companies need to equip workers with skills--not rules--for building these relationships. The authors offer the following five principles for healthy resolution of the tensions that commonly arise over difference: Pause to short-circuit the emotion and reflect; connect with others, affirming the importance of relationships; question yourself to identify blind spots and discover what makes you defensive; get genuine support that helps you gain a broader perspective; and shift your mind-set from one that says, "You need to change," to one that asks, "What can I change?" When people treat their cultural differences--and related conflicts and tensions--as opportunities to gain a more accurate view of themselves, one another, and the situation, trust builds and relationships become stronger. Leaders should put aside the PC rule book and instead model and encourage risk taking in the service of building the organization's relational capacity. The benefits will reverberate through every dimension of the company's work.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000240003800018

    View details for PubMedID 16967622

  • Radical change, the quiet way HARVARD BUSINESS REVIEW MEYERSON, D. E. 2001; 79 (9): 92-?
  • Tempered Radicals: How People Use Difference to Inspire Change at Work Meyerson, D. E. Harvard Business School Press. 2001
  • Tempered Radicals: How People Use Difference to Change at Work Meyerson, D. E. Harvard Business School Press. 2001
  • Moving out of the 'armchair': Developing a framework to bridge the gap between feminist theory and practice ORGANIZATION Meyerson, D. E., Kolb, D. M. 2000; 7 (4): 553-571
  • Advancing gender equity in organizations: The challenge and importance of maintaining a gender narrative ORGANIZATION Ely, R. J., Meyerson, D. E. 2000; 7 (4): 589-608
  • Feeling stressed and burned out: A feminist reading and re-visioning of stress-based emotions within medicine and organization science ORGANIZATION SCIENCE Meyerson, D. E. 1998; 9 (1): 103-118
  • TEMPERED RADICALISM AND THE POLITICS OF AMBIVALENCE AND CHANGE ORGANIZATION SCIENCE MEYERSON, D. E., Scully, M. A. 1995; 6 (5): 585-600
  • INTERPRETATIONS OF STRESS IN INSTITUTIONS - THE CULTURAL PRODUCTION OF AMBIGUITY AND BURNOUT ADMINISTRATIVE SCIENCE QUARTERLY MEYERSON, D. E. 1994; 39 (4): 628-653

    Abstract

    This ethnographic study of interpretations of stress among hospital social workers reveals concrete ways in which institutional systems take form in the mundane actions and interpretations of individuals embedded in these systems. It also reveals how organizational cultures reflect and reinforce institutional conditions that have been negotiated in the interactions of individuals. Here, the institutional systems of medicine and social work come together in the everyday work of the social workers and result in two patterns of cultural dominance. Within these distinct types of culture emerge two forms of stress experience, including a dominant form, consistent with medical ideology, and a marginalized form, consistent with social work ideology. Some surprising patterns of interpretation emerge, including interpretations of ambiguity and burnout as normal, social, and desirable when the social work ideology is dominant. This institutional analysis of stress has theoretical, practical, and epistemological implications.

    View details for Web of Science ID A1994QN47400004

    View details for PubMedID 10144744

  • HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH - PSYCHOLOGICAL COMPONENTS OF GUNS VERSUS BUTTER DECISIONS IN A SECURITY DILEMMA JOURNAL OF PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY Kramer, R. M., Meyerson, D., Davis, G. 1990; 58 (6): 984-993
  • CULTURAL-CHANGE - AN INTEGRATION OF 3 DIFFERENT VIEWS JOURNAL OF MANAGEMENT STUDIES Meyerson, D., Martin, J. 1987; 24 (6): 623-647