March 31, 2021

Dr. Michael Valentine of Division of Programs in Business Leads Action Research Primer for SPS Faculty

The NYU SPS Division of Programs in Business (DPB) hosted its second DPB Research Lunch Series session for SPS Faculty on Tuesday, March 30th, 2021. Dr. Michael Valentine, Clinical Assistant Professor of Human Capital Management, facilitated a one-hour primer on action research. Dr. Valentine began by recounting his research process conducted at The New York Times, where he served as Vice President of Human Resources from 2008 to 2012. He also clarified the essential characteristics of action research and how it differs from traditional research. Although often described as a methodology, action research, he explained, is more of an approach or philosophy designed to deliver positive change to a system of interest. 

Dr. Valentine discussed the three disciplines of action research—scientific-technical, practical-deliberate, and critical-emancipatory—and the application of this approach in global initiatives and in the classroom. He also answered questions from the audience of DPB and SPS faculty and staff. Dr. Martin Ihrig, Associate Dean of DPB, offered closing remarks on the relevance of this philosophy to the School’s mission in advancing applied research. 

This session was offered as part of a new conversation series for SPS faculty on applied research and collaboration across industries and the functional areas of business. The first installment in the series commenced on December 7th, 2020, with an overview of DPB’s Human Capital Management department from Dr. Anna Tavis, Academic Director. SPS faculty also had an opportunity to discuss their backgrounds and expertise in a variety of fields, including diversity and inclusion, strategic workforce planning, public relations, real estate and sustainable design, energy and environment, and leisure and hospitality.

DPB is the largest division at NYU School of Professional Studies, with over 2,200 students, 500 faculty, and over 7,000 alumni. The Division comprises four centers of excellence that educate leaders in the functional areas of an enterprise. Each department’s credit and non-credit portfolio of offerings serves students at every level of their careers, providing them with the knowledge and skills required to succeed in critical positions in their professional development.

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