We are hiring! A postdoc in management focused on qualitative methods!

Join us! We are hiring a fully funded postdoc for two years, with a potential for future permanent employment. We can promise you great opportunities working with things that excite you, and that can change things! We are looking for a driven individual with excellent skills in qualitative methods that will be applied at the intersection of extreme contexts and artificial intelligence. For your convenience, the entire ad text is included below (but it is better to use this link: https://umu.varbi.com/en/what:job/jobID:625878/ Deadline, June 1st, 2023! APPLY!!!

Postdoc position in Business Administration, qualitative methods

Umeå School of Business, Economics and Statistics at Umeå University

Umeå University is one of Sweden’s largest higher education institutions with over 37 000 students and about 4 700 employees. The University offers a diversity of high-quality education and world-leading research in several fields. And the groundbreaking discovery of the CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool, which was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, was made here. At Umeå University, everything is close. Our cohesive campuses make it easy to meet, work together and exchange knowledge, which promotes a dynamic and open culture.

The ongoing societal transformation and large green investments in northern Sweden create enormous opportunities and complex challenges. For Umeå University, conducting research about – and in the middle of – a society in transition is what it is all about. But also about delivering education to enable regions to expand quickly and sustainably. This is simply where the future is built.

Are you interested in learning more? Read about Umeå university as a workplace

Postdoc position in Business Administration with a focus on qualitative methods
The Management Section within the Department of Business Administration at Umeå School of Business, Economics and Statistics invites applications for a two-year Postdoctoral Fellowship in Qualitative Methods. The position will be affiliated with the research group “Extreme Environments – Everyday Decisions (www.TripleED.com) and the successful applicant will be invited to join and/or lead projects at the intersection of organizations and management, extreme contexts and artificial intelligence (previous research experience in these fields is not a requirement). Applicants who are confident working with qualitative data (evidenced through their dissertation work, publications and/or research projects) are particularly encouraged to apply. Exceptional candidates who wish to develop their qualitative methods skills, but who have primarily worked with conceptual, quantitative or mixed-methods approaches may also be considered. Apply 2023-06-01 at the latest!

About the research environment

The TripleED group is an interdisciplinary research environment interested in extreme contexts – settings where people risk getting hurt or killed (see Hällgren et al, 2018). Current research projects include the response to Covid-19 within the Police, and incident command work in organizations critical to society’s resilience (police, armed forces, county administrative boards), team decision making in remote and inaccessible environments, the commercialization of risk in adventure tourism (ski guiding, mountaineering), the study of odd groups and organizations, leadership and teamwork in rescue services, and collective behaviors in Doomsday scenarios (such as apocalypses). A common denominator across our members projects is the use of qualitative methods (interviews, ethnography, fiction, and archival data analysis etc) and an interest in practices and processes. Our faculty are eclectic in their theoretical orientation, and draw on literatures such as occupational identity, institutional theory, organizational routines, sensemaking, leadership, risk, and collective competence. Researchers in the group have published in i.e. Academy of Management Annals, Academy of Management Perspectives, Journal of Management Studies, Human Relations, Management Learning and Academy of Management Learning and Education, and regularly present at conferences such as Academy of Management (AoM) Conference, the European Group for Organization Studies (EGOS) Colloquium, and the Process Studies (PROS) conference.

The advertised position is interdisciplinary. In addition of the position at Business Administration there will be a postdoc position at the research group ”The Socially Aware AI” (SAAI), at the department of Computer Science, Umeå University. Both postdoc positions is part of the university-wide center for AI research, TAIGA. (www.umu.se/en/centre-for-transdisciplinary-ai/) In addition to other projects, the successful candidate is expected to work with TripleED faculty across the teams in a jointly selected few projects to develop agent-based simulations based on qualitative data.

The research at the Management section is broad. The research covers research topics such as collaboration dynamics (startup-corporate, startup-public sector), digital transformation, new forms of leadership, the dynamics of identity formation in organisational contexts, embodiment and temporality, global management, organisational paradoxes, routines and meaningfulness, sensemaking, inclusion in organisations, and legitimacy at work, ethics and sustainability, temporary organising and extreme contexts.

Work description

The successful candidate is expected to plan and conduct independent and collaborative research with researchers in TripleED. Examples of activities include collecting and analyzing qualitative material, writing, publishing and presenting research in management journals and conferences, and participating in simulation development discussions. The position is for 100%, including up to 20% of teaching on basic and advanced levels in business administration. This corresponds to approximately two classes/year in subjects such as leadership, organizational change, strategy and methods. Classes are taught as a team. The successful applicant is expected to relocate to Umeå. The successful applicant will be employed by Umeå University and receive a competitive salary for a period of two years fulltime. A third year of funding may be offered, contingent on successful grant applications.

The starting date for the position is upon agreement, but no later than October 1, 2023. Within recent years, several of our postdocs have successfully applied for permanent positions and, in competition, been employed as permanent faculty within the department.

Sweden is known for its social security system and safe conditions, which the successful candidate would enjoy. Umeå is known for its friendly vibrant atmosphere and closeness to nature (see https://visitumea.se/en). At the department of Business Administration, we take pride in our collegial environment and our support for early career scholars to grow into independent researchers. For instance, we offer a mentorship program, and there are career programs hosted by the university. There are also support for grant writing and journal publications. Postdocs are encouraged to attend conferences, for which funding is provided. Funding, within reason, is also provided for data collection and work-related expenses. The successful candidate will be part of a research environment that frequently invites international scholars to give talks, and the candidate are encouraged to take such initiatives too, to build their own network. TripleED faculty, and the management section are part of large global networks (such as EGOS, PROS and AoM), including heading the Organizing Extreme context network comprising >700 international scholars, and the six-year Standing Working Group initiative on Extreme contexts at the EGOS conference. Previous postdocs have received opportunities for engaging with these initiatives.

Requirements and qualifications

A successful candidate shall:

  • have a Ph.D. in Business Administration, Organizational Behavior, Management or in a related area before starting the position. The research group is interdisciplinary and we are very open to scholars with a Ph.D. in e.g. sociology, psychology, informatics, anthropology to name but a few.
  • be skilled in collecting and analyzing qualitative empirical material (e.g. interviews, ethnography, fiction, narrative analysis, grounded theory etc.)
  • have published, or have the potential to publish, internationally competitive research. This is demonstrated by published research, or publications in a well-advanced stage in the peer review process, in internationally renowned journals, and/or through books, edited books, and book chapters.
  • the ability to work independently and as part of a research group.
  • have good communication skills in written and spoken English.

Meritorious qualities

  • research on leadership, organizational routines, team dynamics, extreme contexts or AI
  • have an international network
  • experience of interdisciplinary research
  • strong interpersonal skills

Priority will be given to candidates who have completed their doctoral degree no more than three years before the closing date of the application. Candidates that have not yet defended their dissertation when applying are required to have successfully defended their dissertation before starting the position. A candidate who has completed their degree before three years may be considered if special circumstances apply. Special circumstances include absence due to illness, parental leave, appointments of trust in trade unions or similar circumstances. We appreciate an equal gender balance and particularly welcome female applicants for the position.

How to apply

The application should include:
a personal letter (max one page)
a Curriculum Vitae
a report on past and ongoing research interest with relevance for the position (max two pages)
a full publication list
copies of the Ph.D. thesis and a maximum of five additional publications
copies of relevant degree certificates and other documentation

The application is to be submitted to the University recruitment system no later than 2022-06-01. For further information, please contact the Head of Research and responsible of TripleED, professor Markus Hällgren at markus.hallgren@umu.se or Deputy Head of Business Administration professor Johan Jansson at +4690 – 786 78 72, johan.jansson@umu.se; questions about doing a postdoc in Umeå is best answered by associate professor Sophie Jané at sophie.jane@umu.se (coming from the US), and associate professor Virginie Fernandez Virginie.fernandez@umu.se (coming from Europe).


Hällgren, M., Rouleau, L., & De Rond, M. (2018). A matter of life or death: How extreme context research matters for management and organization studies. Academy of Management Annals, 12(1), 111-153.

More about USBE
As an internationally respected, nationally influential, and regionally rooted part of Umeå University, Umeå School of Business, Economics, and Statistics contributes to societal development through education and research of a high international standard.

Through interplay with surrounding society, we provide education and research that contributes to the understanding, ability, and responsibility of individuals in relation to societal challenges and the importance of sustainable development.

In collaboration with our surrounding society, we provide education and research that contributes to individuals’ understanding, ability and responsibility in relation to societal challenges and the importance of sustainable development. We are AACSB-accredited and sustainability certified according to the environmental management standard ISO14001.

The Department of Business Administration, the Department of Economics, the Department of Statistics and The USBE office form USBE, with about 150 employees. About 3800 students study in our programs every year and we offer education from the undergraduate to the doctoral program level in all of our main disciplines – Business Administration, Economics and Statistics.

The Department of Business Administration has about 60 members of staff. We pursue research within four sections Entrepreneurship, Management, Marketing and Accounting/Finance. Read more about Business administration here: USBE/about us/Business Administration

Read more about USBE here: https://www.umu.se/en/usbe/

Welcome with your application!

Type of employment Temporary position
Contract type Full time
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100%
City Umeå
County Västerbottens län
Country Sweden
Reference number AN 2.2.1-833-23
  • Markus Hällgren, Professor, 090-7865885markus.hallgren@umu.se
  • Johan Jansson, Professor, 090-7867872,johan.jansson@umu.se
Union representative
  • SACO, 090-7865365
  • SEKO, 090-7865296
  • ST, 090-7865431
Published 06.May.2023
Last application date 01.Jun.2023 11:59 PM CEST
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Assistant professor Lauren Waardenburg giving presentations for TripleEd and TAIGA

Next week (20th and 21st of April) we (TripleEd) have the great pleasure of welcoming Lauren Waardenburg to Umeå School of Business, Economics, and Statistics (USBE). Lauren is an assistant professor of Information Systems at IESEG School of Management. Lauren will give two talks, one at the department of Business administration, and one for the FrAIday seminars run by TAIGA – Centre for Transdisciplinary AI. Everyone is most welcome to both! If you need guidance on where to go, reach out to me (Markus).

FEK seminar serie
Thursday April 20,
Time: 13.30-14.30
Where: Green Room (dept of B.A)
Title: Juggling street work and data work: An ethnography of policing and reporting practices

Abstract: Organizational research on data production often aims to unpack the nature and meaning of data and the work practices through which it is made. Yet, not much is known about how the growing need to produce data influences the performance of other, more situated work. Our three-year ethnographic study of the Dutch police unravels this issue and shows that police officers adopt three strategies to cope with anticipated data work in their situated practices: avoiding work, deviating from protocol, and capturing experiences. These strategies helped police officers to alleviate the burden of data production, but also influenced how they performed their situated work and what and how crimes were reported, which contrasted the aims of data-driven police work. Our findings have implications for existing research on data production and for studies on anticipatory work by arguing that data construction starts at the situated practices and by showing how anticipating the work needed to produce data influences how both situated and data work are performed.

FrAIday seminar serie
Friday April 21
Time:11.00 – 12.00
WHERE: Hörsal C or Zoom (follow the link below)
Title: It takes a village: The ecology of explaining AI

Abstract: AI systems are commonly believed to be able to aid in more objective decision-making and, eventually, to make objective decisions of their own. However, such belief is riddled with fallacies, which are based on an overly simplistic approach to organizational decision-making. Based on an ethnography of the Dutch police, we demonstrate that making decisions with AI requires practical explanations that go beyond an analysis of the computational methods used to generate predictions, to include an entire ecology of unbounded, open-ended interactions and interdependencies. In other words, explaining AI is ecological. Yet, this typically goes unnoticed. We argue that this is highly problematic, as it is through acknowledging this ecology that we can recognize that we are not, and never will be, making objective decisions with AI. If we continue to ignore the ecology of explaining AI, we end up reinforcing, and potentially even further stigmatizing, existing societal categories.

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Sophie Jané serves as AOM 2022 Guest Speaker

Sophie Jané (Postdoc in Business Administration) has been invited to serve as a guest speaker at the 2022 Academy of Management Conference New Doctoral Student Consortium (NDSC). Sophie will be a panelist for a session titled “What is it like to do a PhD?” The panel is intended to expose new and incoming students to diverse perspectives on PhD student life, and topics will include the nature of day-to-day work (research, teaching, and service), collaborating on projects, and building a professional network. The session will be held from 10:30 – 11:25 on Saturday, August 6th.

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Open postdoc positions in the intersection of Extreme contexts and AI

We are looking for two postdocs interested in exploring the intersection between extreme contexts and AI. One postdoc will be based at the Department of Computer Science, and one postdoc will be based at the Department of Business Administration.

The CS postdoc should have a strong background in Computer Science or mathematics. https://umu.varbi.com/en/what:job/jobID:505077/type:job/where:4/apply:1

The BA postdoc should have a background in business administration, and qualitative methods. https://umu.varbi.com/en/what:job/jobID:507573/type:job/where:4/apply:1

Are you one of our future colleagues? APPLY!

Do you know of someone that would be interested in becoming our future colleague? FORWARD the information!

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Funding from Nordforsk for studying backcountry skiers decision making

Avalanche Safety Rules for Backcountry Skiers - Men's JournalA collaborative interdisciplinary project led by Audun Hetland at the University of Tromsö, Norway, received funding (30 Nkr!) from Nordforsk the other day. It is a four-year project, titled “Grappling with Uncertainty in Environments Signaling Spurious Experiential Decisions (GUESSED)”.

Together with other scholars from the nordic countries, Markus will be studying decision-making among backcountry skiers in avalanche terrain by among other means ethnographic methods. More information about the project here: https://www.nordforsk.org/projects/grappling-uncertainty-environments-signaling-spurious-experiential-decisions-guessed

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Funding from FORTE for studying police investigators!

Oscar, Ola and Ulrika Haake received funding (3,2 Mkr!) from FORTE for more studies of the Police. The project is titled:”Den ”civilianiserade” polismyndigheten: Genus, status och professionsgränser inom brottsutredning”, approximately “The civilanized police authority: Gender, Status and boundaries of profession in investigative work” More information about the project here: https://www.umu.se/nyheter/genus-status-och-professionsgranser-inom-brottsutredning_9666344/

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Article accepted: Sensemaking in detective work: The social nature of crime investigation

In what ways can detective work be understood as a social process? Together with Ola Lindberg and Oscar Rantatalo we explore this question in our recent article “Sensemaking in detective work: The social nature of crime investigation”, accepted for publication in International Journal of Police Science and Management!! YIHOOO!!!!

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Funding for studying organizational routines in incident command centers

Last night, Oscar, Ola, and I received the news that Riksbankens jubileumsfond will finance our project “Organizational routines in incident command centers: Improving society’s ability to handle extreme events“!!!

Please find the abstract below.


The project investigates organizational routines in incident command through a comparative analysis of organizations critical to society’s response to extreme events. The purpose of the project is to develop a novel framework for understanding routines and their function as organizations switch to incident command. Further, the project aims to test this framework in the studied organizations. The project’s importance is partly identified by the organizations themselves and partly motivated by the increasing challenges of extreme events generally. Lastly, there is a clearly identified knowledge gap concerning routines in extreme contexts. In extension, the project’s aim is therefore to contribute to society’s resilience in tackling challenges such as climate change, increased migration and terrorism. Incident command work within the provincial- police, armed forces, Security services, and County administrative board (Västerbotten) is investigated through ethnographic methods covering both extreme events and preparation for these events. Each organization is studied by one member of the research team through interviews, observations and document studies. Through a unique cooperative effort in “Knowledge Forum Region North”, the organizations discuss the challenges of incident command with the research team. The knowledge forum also constitutes a test arena for practical application of the theoretical models provided by the researchers.

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Funding from AFA insurances to study meaningful routines in healthcare

Mattias, Malin and Virginia have received funding (approx 3000 000 kr; 300 000 Euro) from AFA insurances to study meaningful routines in healtcare! Please find the abstract below and more information in the URLs.



It is well-known that organizational routines play a key role in upholding stability and continuity at work. In primary health care, where the influx of patients with various illnesses is extensive and turnover of staff is increasing, well-functioning routines are even more crucial. However, if the routines are not perceived as meaningful, there is a risk that healthcare professionals will deviate from or just ignore them, which could have hazardous consequences for both patients and staff. Meaningfulness has been shown to be important in promoting resilience, and the ability to manage stress, and thereby reduce sick leave, which are current challenges in primary care. The proposed project is thus focused on “meaningful routines” in primary health care. This means routines that not only enable work to be successfully executed but also provide organization members with a sense of meaningfulness, which is an overlooked area of research. The purpose is to advance the understanding of meaningful routines in organizations. Based on in-depth interviews and four rounds of focus groups with primary healthcare professionals, an understanding of what makes routines meaningful will be developed. This knowledge is above all important for making primary health care more sustainable, but also transferable to other organizations where routines are central in order to maintain stability and safety.


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