Professor MariaLaura Di Domenico
Director of Research and Deputy Head of Surrey Business School (Research)
Qualifications: PhD, MRes, PGCE HE, FHEA, MCIPD, BA(Hons)
Phone: Work: 01483 68 6304
Monday 12:00 - 13:00
Wednesday 12:00 - 14:00
BiographyProfessor MariaLaura Di Domenico is Director of Research and Deputy Head of Surrey Business School, University of Surrey, where she holds a Chair in Entrepreneurship, Work and Organization. Previously she held academic positions at the Judge Business School, University of Cambridge, the Open University Business School, and the University of Westminster. She holds a PhD from the University of Strathclyde, is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA), a Member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (MCIPD), and a Senior Member of Wolfson College, University of Cambridge. Currently she is External Examiner at the University of Strathclyde Glasgow.
MariaLaura is a leading international researcher known for her cutting edge research.
Her research is focussed on social/ community enterprise and organization; entrepreneurship, home-based businesses and new working practices; discourse and identity; and the sociology of work and organizations.
Her research interests and expertise centre on the following key areas:
- Entrepreneurship; home-based businesses and mobile working; the home/work interface in small firms and family businesses;
- Social entrepreneurship, social/ community enterprises and the 'third' sector;
- Organisational discourse, identity and sociological theory.
MariaLaura's research is published in the leading management and social science journals including Human Relations; Organization Studies; Organization; Entrepreneurship, Theory and Practice; British Journal of Management; International Small Business Journal; Journal of Management Inquiry; Regional Studies; Tourism Management; New Technology, Work and Employment; Gender, Work and Organization; as well as in books and monographs. For example, her latest book, for which she is Lead Editor, is 'Organisational Collaboration: Themes and Issues', published by Routledge.
Her work has been funded by a range of bodies, including the British Academy, RCUK, ESRC, EEUK, the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland, as well as Third Sector organizations. She is currently leading and researching a number of exciting and impactful funded research projects.
- 'Evolving Museum Identities and Paradoxical Response Strategies to Identity Challenges and Ambiguities: Changing Ethical Understandings in the Handling of Human Remains'.
Journal of Management Inquiry, Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/807270/
There has been little research into how organizations modify their identities in response to the various ethical and cultural changes that occur in wider society. This qualitative investigation of recent museum approaches to handling human remains is situated within a critique of “museum identity” dynamics in history, archaeological, and science museums in the U.K. public sector. The theoretical framework encapsulates various paradoxes inherent in museum response strategies to such identity challenges. This study reveals the discursive practices museums use to legitimate and privilege their historical identities, while simultaneously engaging with different alternative identities in processes defined here as “organizational sensitivization.” These involve either amalgamating identity challenges or diffusing them, usually by means of open dialogue. Those challenges perceived to be identity threats are marginalized by the museums to protect their articulated identities through engagement in self-legitimization processes. This can leave museums with paradoxically unresolved tensions and identity ambiguities.
- ''Mental mobility' in the digital age: Entrepreneurs and the online home-based business'.
New Technology, Work and Employment, 29 (3), pp. 266-281.doi: 10.1111/ntwe.12034
Home-based online business ventures are an increasingly pervasive yet under-researched phenomenon. The experiences and mindset of entrepreneurs setting up and running such enterprises require better understanding. Using data from a qualitative study of 23 online home-based business entrepreneurs, we propose the augmented concept of 'mental mobility' to encapsulate how they approach their business activities. Drawing on Howard P. Becker's early theorising of mobility, together with Victor Turner's later notion of liminality, we conceptualise mental mobility as the process through which individuals navigate the liminal spaces between the physical and digital spheres of work and the overlapping home/workplace, enabling them to manipulate and partially reconcile the spatial, temporal and emotional tensions that are present in such work environments. Our research also holds important applications for alternative employment contexts and broader social orderings because of the increasingly pervasive and disruptive influence of technology on experiences of remunerated work.
- 'Starting Up or Slowing Down? A Multi-Level Dialectical-Paradox Lens for Top Management Team (TMT) Strategic Decision-Making in a Corporate-Venture'.
British Journal of Management, Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/806277/
This paper aims to critique the process of corporate-owned, high-tech start-up strategizing through an inductive, longitudinal, case study of ‘UK-Research-Tech’. Insights are given through the combined ‘dialectical–paradox’ concept, thereby focusing on where ‘dialectic’ and ‘paradox’ theorizing overlap. This linked iterative, ‘dialogical–dialectic’ research approach also reflects chief executive officer/top management team (CEO/TMT) start-up dynamics over time. These foci fill important gaps that impede better understanding of dialectical, dialogical and paradoxical forces within strategic decision-making. As an interpretative tool, they illuminate CEO/TMT strategizing and changing interrelationships affected by broader, volatile, techno-economic contexts and parent-company influences on ventures. In this case study, it was found that the CEO's relatively autocratic, parent-framed approach combined with TMT members' contradictory reactions to create ‘dialectical–paradox’ oppositional forces, eventually only resolved through ‘eleventh hour’ business strategy changes to rescue the venture. This research contributes to more nuanced understandings of corporate-constrained ventures during early business development from start-up strategic decisions at parent-company level to subsequent conditions of more independent dynamic equilibrium. The ‘dialectical–paradox’ conceptual lens contributes an innovative critique of processes affecting strategic decision-making dynamics. Another important contribution is the empirically inspired conceptual model, developed for use both to guide subsequent case-study research analyses and as a reflective tool for CEO/TMT strategic decision-making, especially within corporate-inspired start-ups.
- 'Location independent working in academia'.
Journal of Workplace Rights, 17 (4), pp. 425-442.doi: 10.2190/WR.17.3-4.k
In this article, we consider the extent to which the practice of location independent working (LIW) enables academic employees to make choices and have agency in their life-work balance, and the extent to which it may support (or potentially be used as a form of resistance to) increased managerial control. Set within the context of an increasingly performance-led, managerialist public sector landscape, the impact and implications of these working practices are examined through the lens of labour process theory. Drawing on findings from an ongoing in-depth ethnographic study set in a post-1992 university business school in central England, we suggest that the practice of LIW is being used both to enable employees and to support managerial control.
- 'Effectuation and home-based online business entrepreneurs'.
International Small Business Journal, Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/805674/
This article explores effectual processes within home-based online businesses. Our empirical evidence provides a number of refinements to the concept of effectuation in this specific domain. First, the ubiquity of non-proprietary online trading platforms encourages the adoption of effectual approaches and removes the importance of forming proprietary strategic alliances and pre-commitments. Second, the notion of affordable loss – a central tenet of effectuation – should be extended beyond the notion of economic to social affordable loss, including loss of status and reputation, and finally, home-based online businesses allow effectuation to be associated with low levels of entrepreneurial self-efficacy and experience.
- '"Time(x) Out of Joint": Interpreting Spectral Imagery in Media Representations of the 1993 Timex Industrial Dispute in Scotland'.
Journal of Management Inquiry, 23 (1), pp. 80-92.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/805728/
The prolonged and acrimonious industrial dispute and subsequent closure of the Timex Electronics plant in Dundee, Scotland, in 1993 is a key marker in U.K. manufacturing and labor relations history that was extensively covered in the media at that time. A discourse analysis of U.K. print-media representations of the dispute reveals both vivid accounts of the labor relations collapse and evocative imagery reaching beyond this particular event. Newspaper accounts were found to be laced with dark images including those of death and specters from the past, symbolizing the continuing expiration of much of British manufacturing and ghostly ever presence of Thatcher-era industrial relations. This leads us to a deeper interpretation, drawing on Derrida's Spectres of Marx, exposing the dark shadow lurking within the post-1989 neoliberal capitalist ebullience present at the time of the strike, and presaging the present global crisis in capitalism and regret over the closure of such manufacturing plants. © The Author(s) 2013.
- 'Market research and the ethics of big data'. International Journal of Market Research, 55 (4), pp. 41-56. . (2013)
- 'Farming and tourism enterprise: Experiential authenticity in the diversification of independent small-scale family farming'.
Tourism Management, 33 (2), pp. 285-294.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/182704/
This article examines the business choices made by independent farming families, when confronting the need to diversify away from traditional agricultural activities by starting farm-based tourism businesses. Based on interviews with farm family members who have set up tourism attractions on their farms, and drawing upon the concept of experiential authenticity, the article explores their self-conceptions of their family identities. In so doing, it addresses the choices and dilemmas facing farm families who attempt diversification through the tourism attraction route, and considers how this affects their attitudes towards more traditional farming activities. Using qualitative case study data, an empirically grounded framework is proposed that expresses the choices and challenges facing tourism entrepreneurial family farm members in the UK, through the conceptual lens of experiential authenticity. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.
- 'A hotel inspector calls: exploring surveillance at the home-work interface'.
ORGANIZATION, 18 (5), pp. 615-636.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/185986/
This article, which examines inspection experiences in the home-based context of the B&B, makes a distinctive contribution to surveillance theory, and specifically the concept of „exposure‟. It draws on Levinas‟s phenomenological ideas on identity and his concept of „sensibility‟, in order to better place the „exposed‟ subject at the centre of analysis. Our empirical research shows how B&B proprietors negotiate their exposure to surveillance within their homes when they take part in the tourist board‟s accommodation grading process. Their „lifestyle businesses‟ involve exposing the context of their own lives to their paying guests, and by extension to the hotel inspectors from the tourist board with its own covert inspectorial procedures. These are described from both the inspector‟s and proprietor‟s perspectives. We explore not only their subjective experiences of the inspection process, but also the power dynamics between proprietor and inspector, and the various resistance and counter-resistance strategies which each employ
- 'Farming and tourism enterprise: Experiential authenticity in the diversification of independent small-scale family farming'.
Tourism Management, In PressFull text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/6921/
This article examines the business choices made by independent farming families, when confronting the need to diversify away from traditional agricultural activities by starting farm-based tourism businesses. Based on interviews with farm family members who have set up tourism attractions on their farms, and drawing upon the concept of experiential authenticity, the article explores their self-conceptions of their family identities. In so doing, it addresses the choices and dilemmas facing farm families who attempt diversification through the tourism attraction route, and considers how this affects their attitudes towards more traditional farming activities. Using qualitative case study data, an empirically grounded framework is proposed that expresses the choices and challenges facing tourism entrepreneurial family farm members in the UK, through the conceptual lens of experiential authenticity.
- 'Social bricolage: Theorizing social value creation in social enterprises'.
Entrepreneurship: Theory and Practice, 34 (4), pp. 681-703.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/236230/
Current theorizations of bricolage in entrepreneurship studies require refinement and development to be used as a theoretical framework for social entrepreneurship. Our analysis traces bricolage's conceptual underpinnings from various disciplines, identifying its key constructs as making do, a refusal to be constrained by limitations, and improvisation. Although these characteristics appear to epitomize the process of creating social enterprises, our research identifies three further constructs associated with social entrepreneurship: social value creation, stakeholder participation, and persuasion. Using data from a qualitative study of eight U.K. social enterprises, we apply the bricolage concept to social entrepreneurial action and propose an extended theoretical framework of social bricolage. © 2010 Baylor University.
- 'Sustaining the Ivory Tower: Oxbridge Formal Dining as Organizational Ritual'.
JOURNAL OF MANAGEMENT INQUIRY, 18 (4), pp. 326-343.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/533747/
- 'The Dialectic of Social Exchange: Theorizing Corporate-Social Enterprise Collaboration'. ORGANIZATION STUDIES, 30 (8), pp. 887-907. . (2009)
- ''It's a guesthouse not a brothel': Policing sex in the home-workplace'.
HUMAN RELATIONS, 62 (2), pp. 245-269.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/562726/
- 'Social Economy Involvement in Public Service Delivery: Community Engagement and Accountability'.
REG STUD, 43 (7), pp. 981-992.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/244020/
- ''I'm not just a housewife': Gendered roles and identities in the home-based hospitality enterprise'.
Gender, Work and Organization, 15 (4), pp. 313-332.
This article explores an under-researched form of commercial hospitality provision by analysing the gender dynamics in the distinctive occupational setting of the home. The primary contribution is to extend understanding of traditionally female occupations by adding to accounts in the literature on gendered identities and occupational roles in small and micro enterprises. It is based on in-depth interview findings from 33 home-based commercial hospitality proprietors in Scotland. These enterprises perform the twin functions of private home and providing revenue-generating, short-term accommodation. The findings reveal three broad categories of proprietor; the female sole proprietor, proprietor couples and the male sole proprietor, all of whom reinforce traditional gender-based roles and stereotypes. As an extension of domestic labour, commercial 'home hosting' is inherently gendered. It is argued that this is very pronounced in home-based commercial hospitality where home and business spheres overlap. © 2008 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
- 'Heritage and urban renewal in Dundee: Learning from the past when planning for the future of a post-industrial city'. Journal of Retail and Leisure Property, 6 (4), pp. 327-339. . (2007)
- 'Host/guest encounters in the commercial home'. Leisure Studies, 26 (3), pp. 321-338. . (2007)
- 'Social action research and small hospitality firms'. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, 15 (5), pp. 268-273. . (2003)
- 'Fixed, Tethered or Free: The Role of Space and Place in Online Home-Based Businesses'. Invited Keynote. ESRC Seminar Series: Entrepreneurship in Homes and Neighbourhoods, Middlesex University London. . (2014)
- 'Linking back, linking forward: Developing a future research agenda for digital entrepreneurship'. University of Surrey: Digital Entrepreneurship: A Cutting Edge Interactive Research Symposium . (2014)
- 'An inspector calls: Exploring surveillance at the home-work interface'. Amsterdam, the Netherlands: European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS) International Research Colloquium . (2008)
- 'Legitimacy formation by social economy organizations: A political perspective on a form of stakeholder coalition'. Tampere, Finland: International Association of Business and Society (IABS) Conference . (2008)
- 'Bricolage, pragmatism and persuasion: Creating social value in deprived and under-resourced environments'. Philadelphia, USA: Academy of Management Conference . (2007)
- 'Social enterprise cross-sector collaborations'. Copenhagen Business School, Denmark: International Social Entrepreneurship Research Conference . (2007)
- 'Theorising corporate-community enterprise partnerships: The dialectic of social exchange'. Freie Universität Berlin, Germany: European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS) International Research Colloquium . (2005)
- 'Representations of Scottish identity in commercial home enterprises'. Dubrovnik, Croatia: Embodying Tourism Research Conference . (2005)
- 'Farm-based tourism attractions: A case-based analysis of diversification in Yorkshire'. Charles Darwin University, Alice Springs, Australia: CAUTHE Conference . (2005)
- 'Home (dis)comforts and the host/guest encounter'. University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland: Tourism: The State of The Art International Conference . (2004)
- 'Networking activities of lifestyle entrepreneurs in the hospitality sector'. University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland: Tourism: The State of The Art International Conference . (2004)
- 'An examination of the justification, choice and use of a particular social scientific qualitative approach in an urban tourism research study'. Glasgow, Scotland: Travel and Tourism Research Association (TTRA) Conference: Urban Tourism, Mapping the Future . (2003)
- 'Locating the Scottish guest house owner-occupier'. Centre for the Study of Small Tourism and Hospitality Firms, Leeds Metropolitan University, Leeds, UK: Small Firms in the Tourism and Hospitality Sectors International Conference . (2002)
- 'The Scottish guest house owner occupier: Lifestyle entrepreneur?'. University of Wales Institute Cardiff, Wales,: International Tourism Research Conference . (2002)
- 'Small hospitality firms: A conceptual framework for qualitative research'. Leeds Metropolitan University, UK: CHME Conference . (2002)
- 'The use of cultural heritage tourism in a bid to boost Dundee: 'City of Discovery' or 'Women’s City' of Scotland?'. Canberra: University of Canberra, Australia: Capitalising on Research, CAUTHE . (2001)
- 'Discourse Analysis in Organizational Research: Methods and Debates'. in Buchanan D, Bryman A (eds.) Handbook of Organizational Research Methods London : Sage . (2011)
- 'The Home/Work Interface in Family Hospitality Businesses: Gender Dimensions and Constructions'. in Hamington M (ed.) Feminism and Hospitality: Gender in the Host/Guest Relationship Lexington Books , pp. 207-220. . (2010)
- 'Strategic Partnerships: Results from a Survey of Development Trusts in the UK'. in Hockerts K, Mair J, Robinson J (eds.) Values and Opportunities in Social Entrepreneurship Palgrave MacMillan , pp. 203-220. . (2009)
- 'Tourism in Rwanda: The challenges of managing and presenting a sensitive heritage'. in Fleming S (ed.) Leisure and Tourism: International Perspectives on Cultural Practice Leisure Studies Association , pp. 3-16. . (2009)
- 'Participant Observation'. in Mills AJ, Durepos G, Wiebe E (eds.) Encyclopedia of Case Study Research
List of Entries Abduction Action-Based Data Collection Activity Theory Actor- Network Theory Agency Alienation Analysis of Visual Data Analytic ...
- 'Symbolic interactionism'. in Clegg S, Bailey JR (eds.) International encyclopedia of organization studies Sage Publications, Inc . (2008)
- 'Are plastic cows the future for farming? Implications of an alternative diversification model'. in Tribe J, Airey D (eds.) Tourism Research: new directions, challenges and applications (Developments in tourism research)
Elsevier Science Ltd
, pp. 21-32.
This book aims to be a showcase for cutting edge research offering a high-edited selection of the best paper submitted to the 2006 tourism conference at the ...
- 'Are Plastic Cows the Future for Farming? Implications of an Alternative Diversification Model'. in Tribe J, Airey D (eds.) Developments in tourism research
Oxford, UK : Elsevier Science Ltd
, pp. 21-32.
Tourism research has come a long way since the first developments in the identification and delineation of a tourism subject area in the mid 1960s.
- 'Resident hosts and mobile strangers: Temporary exchanges within the topography of the commercial home'. in Molz JG, Gibson S (eds.) Mobilizing hospitality: the ethics of social relations in a mobile world
Ashgate Pub Co
, pp. 121-143.
Drawing on research from the fields of anthropology, geography, sociology and tourism studies, this volume examines the intersection between mobility and ...
- 'Heritage and urban renewal in Dundee: Learning from the past when planning for the future of a post-industrial city (Reprinted in the journal of Retail and Leisure Property)'. in Aitchison C, Richards G, Tallon A (eds.) Urban Transformations: Regeneration and renewal though leisure and tourism Leisure Studies Association , pp. 115-128. . (2007)
- 'Commercial home enterprises: Identity, space and setting'. in Lashley C, Lynch P, Morrison A (eds.) Hospitality: A social lens Elsevier Science , pp. 117-128. . (2006)
- 'Conceptions of expatriate enclaves as islands: The case of Ibadan Nigeria'. in Skinner J, Hills M (eds.) Managing Island Life: social, economic and political dimensions of formality and informality in ‘island’ communities Abertay University Press , pp. 41-60. . (2006)
- 'Southern Nigerian urban mothers: Role strain and working in the formal sector of the economy'. in Yuill C, van Teijlingen E (eds.) Global Perspectives & Local Issues: medical sociology in North-East Scotland University of Aberdeen and The Robert Gordon University , pp. 23-37. . (2006)
- 'Celebrating and reinterpreting a Scottish heroine at home and abroad: The Mary Slessor connection'. in Aitchison C, Prichard A (eds.) Festivals and Events: culture and identity in leisure, sport and tourism, Leisure Studies Association , pp. 153-168. . (2005)
- 'Producing hospitality, consuming lifestyles: Lifestyle entrepreneurship in urban Scotland'. in Jones E, Haven-Tang C (eds.) Tourism SMEs, Service Quality and Destination Competitiveness CABI Publishing , pp. 109-122. . (2005)
- 'Space and leisure as regenerative elements of an urban cityscape: The case of the Centre for Dundee Contemporary Arts (DCA)'. in Aitchison C, Pussard H (eds.) Leisure, Space and Visual Culture: practices and meanings Leisure Studies Association , pp. 151-173. . (2004)
- 'The role of 'the club' in Ibadan, Nigeria from 1960 to 2000: Exclusivity in post-colonial leisure and sports activities among members of the expatriate and Nigerian elites'. in Snape R, Thwaites E, Williams C (eds.) Access and Inclusion in Leisure and Tourism Leisure Studies Association , pp. 155-175. . (2003)
- 'Re-imaging the city: heritage tourism strategies for regeneration in Dundee'. in Di Domenico C, Law A, Skinner J, Smith M (eds.) Boundaries and Identities: nation, politics and culture in Scotland Abertay University Press , pp. 191-214. . (2001)
- 'Brand images of place and new urban identities in Scotland'. in Horne J (ed.) Leisure, Cultures, Consumption and Commodification Leisure Studies Association , pp. 81-92. . (2001)
- Is flexibility the mother of invention? [online], Open2net article for the BBC's Money Programme (4 August 2008). Open2net article for the BBC's Money Programme . (2008)
- Entrepreneurial Lives. iTunes . (2010)
MBA/ MSc/ UG programmes
MSc/ MBA Dissertation Supervisor
Director of Research and Deputy Head of Surrey Business School
Chair of the Faculty Working Group - WASA (Women Achieving Success in Academia).