I am Professor of Business in Society and Head of the Organisation, Strategy & Entrepreneurship Department in the School of Business and Economics of Maastricht University. I started this position in September 2021. I conduct extensive qualitative research (life and business histories) and combine anthropological theories and concepts with business, organization and management issues, which explain my interest in entrepreneurship, identity, religion, ethnicity, and leadership.
Before that I was Professor in Organisational Studies at the Oxford Brookes Business School, Oxford Brookes University, UK. I hold a PhD in social anthropology from the University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands. After a career in social anthropology, I turned my academic interest to organization studies. I have two broad research interests: the study of small business in Southeast Asia (particularly those of ethnic Chinese owner-managers) and the study of private security organisations in South Africa and the UK.
My research finds its way to such conferences as EGOS, where I am convenor of a Standing Working Group on Organizational Ethnography, the Academy of Management, International Society for the Study of Religion, Annual Ethnography Symposium, International Convention of Asian Scholars and the Organizational Discourse conference. I regularly organise panels and chair at numerous international conferences both in Europe and Asia.
Recently I co-corganized with professor Marianna Fotaki and professor Yochanan Altman, the 11th Organizational Studies Summer Workshop CFP which will lead to a special issues in Organization Studies on Spirituality, Symbolism and Storytelling. The objective of this special issue is to stimulate debates on how to rethink and rewrite ‘organizations’ through drawing on the spiritual, symbolic/imaginary and mythical to rediscover/devise old/new languages to think, imagine and create organizations.
My visiting positions include: Singapore Management University, Atma Jaya University Yogyakarta, Indonesia, Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore and Yale University, USA.
Latest news: I am pleased to have been appointed Research Fellow at Stellenbosch University South Africa for 5 years.