PDW Co-Chairs: Alexandra Bristow, The Open University, UK / Ghazal Mir Zulfiqar, Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), Pakistan

2022 Division PDW Program: Call for Submissions

The Critical Management Studies (CMS) division welcomes PDW proposals for the 2022 Academy of Management Annual Meeting to be held in a hybrid format. PDWs create unique spaces where participants can share their expertise and engage inclusively and provocatively with the audience. This year, our opportunity as critical scholars is to facilitate meaningful experiences for all participants, whether they join the programme face-to-face or online. These experiences should help to establish collaborative connections (literally and metaphorically) through communicative technologies.

In line with the ethos of CMS, we will select PDWs that encompass these four elements:

  • are inclusive, diverse, and representative of the international CMS community

  • embody a spirit of innovative and active participation

  • incorporate early career researchers within the organizing team

  • experiment and innovate to revitalize our offering to the CMS community

Theme of Annual Meeting 2022: "Creating a Better World Together"


The theme of the 2022 Annual Meeting provides many possibilities for critical engagement and provocation. On the one hand, it is a welcome change from last year’s theme that explicitly sought to (re)center managers. Focusing on ‘Creating a Better World Together’ this year’s theme is a critical call for transformative and emancipatory action. This framework gives the CMS community a chance to probe and develop our potential for engaging with pressing social, economic, environmental, health, and political problems. The Annual Meeting theme places these concerns centrally onto the Academy of Management agenda, prioritising the need for societal change and transformation. On the other hand, the promising phrasing of the theme should not lure us into cosy complacency. Critical scholars have a key role in this conversation by  unpicking the potentially universalist assumptions, populist politics, and imperialist, neo-colonial agendas that can hijack slogans such as ‘Creating a Better World Together’, undermining their progressive and transformative potential.

We, therefore, invite proposals for PDWs that address the developmental needs of the international and diverse CMS community by both drawing on and challenging the 2022 theme. We welcome a broad range of ideas, which could address, but are not limited to, the following questions:

  • Why do we need a better world right now? What are the most urgent and time-critical issues? How can we best approach these issues when they are interlocked in complex and contradictory ways as manifested in grand challenges such as the COVID-19 pandemic and the climate catastrophe?

  • For whom and for what should we be creating a better world? What does a ‘better world’ actually mean (and to whom)?

  • What is the relevance of CMS in creating a better world? As a community of scholars, how do we envision and enact a better world? How do we disrupt or think about disrupting existing structures and institutions in order to create more equal spaces? How do we co-construct bridges with colleagues across and beyond AOM?

  • What obstacles and barriers get in the way of creating a better world together? What distractions, divisions, disconnections, detachments, and deceptions obstruct the future? How can we dismantle and overcome them? What power relations need to be worked on, what asymmetries and inequalities dismantled, and how? What kinds of politics should we be adopting, and what kinds of actions should we be taking?

  • How do we work and create together across divisions and tensions? How can we approach ‘together’ in new, more inclusive and nurturing ways? How do we approach the differences further exacerbated and diasporas further marginalised in the last eighteen months?

  • What kinds of resources (theories, methodologies, approaches, pedagogies, etc.) do we have already to draw on for this work, and what do we need to develop further?

  • How do we get our own (academic) house in order to enable us to make the world a better place? How should we deal with the epidemic of mental illness, precarity, overwork, and deteriorating working conditions in academia? How can we better commit to practicing what we preach? How can we ‘create a better university together’ during these times?

  • How can we, CMS scholars, be the change we want to live? How do we help our students to be the change they need to enact?

CMS Research and Transformative Action

We invite CMS scholars to propose PDWs that extend the reach of our research and enhance our potential for transformative action. We encourage proposals to take advantage of the hybrid format and explore non-traditional possibilities of engagement. For example, proposals could deal with:

  • innovative methods of writing research (e.g. blogs, documentaries, social journalism, pedagogic materials, artistic creation) that help to produce societal change and impact in a meaningful sense of the word;

  • new and/or emerging methods for collecting and analyzing data (e.g. methods suitable for conducting social research amidst pandemic conditions) in critically participative and socially engaged ways, and activist methodologies and approaches;

  • issues of performativity, reflexivity, voice, representation, praxis, phronesis, and parrhesia as they relate to the philosophical and methodological concerns of CMS members.

Transformative Critical Management Education and Learning

We must not underestimate our transformative role as educators. We invite CMS members to propose PDWs that inform and innovate our educational methodologies and practices. For example, proposals could address:

  • alternative pedagogies for societal change, which elevate marginalised voices and literatures through decolonising curricula

  • challenging inequalities and power relations within individual teacher/student interactions, module/programme development, and in considering how digital technologies shape experiences of teaching and learning; and,

  • alternative practices which align what we do outside of the classroom with our critical scholarly ethos.

Transformative academic praxis

We cannot change the world without changing ourselves, and transforming and developing our academic praxis is a central concern of the PDW programme. We invite proposals that explore, for example:

  • innovative approaches to doing academia differently, in terms of academic work, careers, and identities, which can help to counteract monocultures in terms of how we envision ‘creating a better world together’

  • individual and collective ways of resisting the deteriorating academic working conditions and dismantling the structures and practices of competition, exclusion, precarity and overwork that keep down our creative and transformative potential

  • how we can best harness and channel the transformative ethos of CMS through everyday practices inside and outside of our academic communities.

PDW Formats

We welcome interactive and innovative PDW formats.

In 2022, what is technically possible in terms of formats will be both enabled and constrained by the specific version of the hybrid format adopted by AOM. After our experiences of the past eighteen months, and engaging critically with the conference theme, this is another opportunity to think carefully about what ‘Creating a Better World Together’ might mean. With the opportunity to participate on-site in-person in Seattle as well as virtually, we are alert to the inclusivity of our format; and much of our work lies in ensuring predictably elite geographies, institutions, and their scholars are not further privileged in our design of sessions.

There will be four types of sessions at the 2022 meeting:

  • On-site in-person only sessions

  • Live-streamed on-site sessions

  • Live virtual-only sessions on the virtual meeting platform

  • Asynchronous (on demand) sessions on the virtual meeting platform

When submitting your proposal, please indicate clearly your preferences in terms of the type of session for your PDW. Please include at least one backup option in addition to your first choice.

Our hybrid format will place new demands on us, forcing us to make new kinds of choices and explore creative formats capable of including and engaging in-person and online participants. The technology available to us allows for large group/small group discussions, and “hands-on” group work. Let’s talk about what is possible.

Developing proposals  

You may find useful the PDW Guidelines for Submission, along with A Guide for Creating and Managing a Good Professional Development Workshop. We encourage proposals that develop conversations with other divisions, to build connections and a critical community across the AOM. As such, please indicate any other divisions to which your PDW would be of interest.

If you would like to discuss a potential proposal, you are welcome to email us. The submission deadline is Tuesday, 11 January 2022, at 5:00 PM ET (NY Time). Please note that both PDW and Scholarly Program sessions may take place any day during the Annual Meeting, Friday, 05 August 2022 – Tuesday, 09 August 2022.