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Amy Edmondson      

Novartis Professor of Leadership & Management at Harvard Business School

Amy C. Edmondson is the Novartis Professor of Leadership and Management at Harvard Business School, where she has taught for over 20 years. The Novartis Chair was established to enable the study of human interactions that lead to the creation of successful business enterprises for the betterment of society. Edmondson’s research examines leadership, learning and innovation in teams and organizations, and has been published in more than 70 articles in journals and books, and in more than 30 Harvard teaching cases. Her research, teaching, and consulting on these issues has occurred in the contexts of health care delivery, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, financial services, government agencies, and consumer product companies. Her emphasis is on teaming – the activities of collaborative work across boundaries – rather than on stable team structures. She teaches courses on leadership and organizational learning and has served on 32 doctoral committees.

Edmondson has been recognized by the biannual Thinkers50 global ranking of management thinkers in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2017 and was honored with the Talent Award in 2017. She studies teaming, psychological safety, and leadership, and her articles have been published numerous academic and management outlets, including Administrative Science Quarterly, Academy of Management Journal, Harvard Business Review and California Management Review. Her books – Teaming: How organizations learn, innovate and compete in the knowledge economy (Jossey-Bass, 2012), Teaming to Innovate (Jossey-Bass, 2013) and Extreme Teaming (Emerald, 2017) – explore teamwork in dynamic organizational environments. In Building the future: Big teaming for audacious innovation (Berrett-Koehler, 2016), she examines the challenges and opportunities of teaming across industries to build smart cities. Her new book,The Fearless Organization: Creating Psychological Safety in the Workplace for Learning, Innovation and Growth (Wiley, 2018), offers a practical guide for organizations serious about success in the modern economy.

Before her academic career, Edmondson was Director of Research at Pecos River Learning Centers, where she worked with founder and CEO Larry Wilson to design and implement organizational change programs in a variety of Fortune 100 companies. In the early 1980s, she was Chief Engineer for architect/inventor Buckminster Fuller, and her book "A Fuller Explanation" (published by Birkhauser 1987; Van Nostrand Reinhold 1998, and Emergent World 2009) clarifies Fuller’s mathematical contributions for a non-technical audience. Edmondson received her PhD in organizational behavior, AM in psychology, and AB in engineering and design from Harvard University.

Speech Topics

What Is a Learning Organization?

Innovation in Teams and Organizations

Collaborative Work Environments and Innovation

Speaking Topics:

  • Decision Making
  • Error and Failure
  • Innovation, Integration & Creativity
  • Leadership
  • Learning & Performance Management
  • Learning Culture
  • Organizational Behavior
  • Organizational learning
  • Psychological Safety
  • Social Capital, Trust & Culture
  • Talent Management
  • Teaming


The World's Top 50 Leadership and Management Thinkers - Forbes

Leadership Award: Liu Chuanzhi: The Chairman of Lenovo Group now the second-largest computer group in the world; Amy Edmondson: The Novartis ...

Why Leaders Need to Rethink Teamwork - Forbes

Today's teams are not well-designed for today's work, argues Professor Amy Edmondson. She recommends and explains a new approach called "teaming."

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