An Unexpected Detour from Ivory Tower to Action Research

  • Jody Hoffer Gittell
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Creativity and Culture book series (PASCC)


Changing one’s research path mid-career is humbling. I took an unexpected detour from ivory tower to action research. In this chapter I tell how the evolution occurred, how it was shaped by my personal life, and the three lessons I learned: (1) being humbled by starting from scratch, (2) gaining a new level of respect for practice, and (3) living in the “space between” academia and practice, facing the need to satisfy multiple stakeholders, each of whom requires something different from you.


Relational coordination Positive change Ivory tower Action research Organizational performance The space between Mixed identity Creative energy 

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jody Hoffer Gittell
    • 1
  1. 1.Brandeis UniversityBostonUSA

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