Michelle Barton

Assistant Professor, Organizational Behavior
  • Phone 617-353-6397
  • Office 623
    Questrom School of Business
    Rafik B. Hariri Building
    595 Commonwealth Avenue
    Boston, MA 02215

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Michelle Barton is an Assistant Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Questrom School of Business, Boston University. She received a PhD in Management & Organizations from the University of Michigan. Her research explores how groups organize within extreme contexts. Specifically, she considers how coordination processes and relational dynamics impact sensemaking, adaptation and resilience during uncertain and dynamic situations. Her work also explores the criticality and limitations of expertise in these contexts. Her work has been published in a variety of outlets, including Academy of Management Review, Organizational Psychology Review, Human Relations, Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, Harvard Business Review and MIT Sloan Management Review.

  • PhD, University of Michigan, Ross School of Business, 2010
  • BA, Pomona College, 1992
  • Barton, M., Kahn, W. (In Press). "Group resilience: The place and meaning of relational pauses.", Organization Studies
  • Leonard, D., Barton, G., Barton, M. (In Press). "Make Yourself an Expert to be included in HBR Guide to Your Professional Growth", Harvard Business Review
  • Kahn, W., Barton, M., Fisher, C., Heaphy, E., Reid, E., Rouse, E. (2018). "The geography of strain: Organizational resilience as a function of intergroup relations", Academy of Management Review, 43 (3), 1-21
  • Barton, M., Sutcliffe, K., Vogus, T., DeWitt, T. (2015). "Performing under uncertainty: Contextualized engagement in wildland firefighting", Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, 23 (2), 74-83
  • Barton, M., Leonard, D. (2015). "Deep Smarts as the Underpinnings of Dynamic Capabilities. In The Oxford Handbook of Dynamic Capabilities", Oxford University Press
  • Barton, M., Bunderson, J. (2014). "Assessing member expertise in groups: An expertise dependence perspective", Organizational Psychology Review, 3 (4)
  • Kahn, W., Barton, M., Fellows, S. (2013). "Organizational Crises and the Disturbance of Relational Systems", Academy of Management Review, 2 (38), 377-396
  • Leonard, D., Barton, M. (2013). "Knowledge and the Management of Creativity and Innovation. In M.Dodgson, D. Gann and N. Phillips (Eds.) Handbook of Innovation Management", Oxford University Press
  • Leonard, D., Barton, G., Barton, M. (2013). "Make Yourself an Expert - How to Pull Knowledge from the People around You", Harvard Business Review, 91 (4), 127-131
  • Barton, M. (2011). Entering Wonderland: Connecting through Negative Capability. In Arne Carlsen, Jane E. Dutton (Eds.), "Research Alive: Exploring Generative Moments in Doing Qualitative Research", Copenhagen Business School Press 30-32
  • Barton, M., Sutcliffe, K. (2010). "Learning when to stop momentum", MIT Sloan Management Review, 51 (3), 69-76
  • Barton, M., Bunderson, J. (2010). ""Status and expertise in groups" Status, Organization and Management.", Cambridge University Press
  • Barton, M., Sutcliffe, K. (2009). "Overcoming dysfunctional momentum: Organizational safety as a social achievement", Human Relations, 62 (9), 1327-1356
  • Black, A., Sutcliffe, K., Barton, M. (2009). "After-action reviews - Who conducts them?", Fire Management Today, 3 (69), 15-17
  • Barton, M., Sutcliffe, K. (2008). "Mindfulness as an organizational capability: Evidence from wildland firefighting", Revue für postheroisches Management
  • Black, A., Sutcliffe, K., Barton, M., Dether, D. (2008). "Assessing high reliability practices in the wildland fire community", Fire Management Today, 2 (68), 24-35
  • Barton, M., Ashford, S. (2007). "Identity based issue-selling. In A. Bartel, S. Blader & A. Wrzesniewski (Eds.), Identity and the modern organization.", Lawrence Erlbaum
  • Thompson, S., Barton, M. (1994). "Ecocentric and anthropocentric attitudes toward the environment", Journal of Environmental Psychology, 2 (14), 149-157
    Research Presentations
  • Barton, M.Overcoming Dysfunctional Momentum, Children's Hospital Association, Dallas, TX, 2018
  • Barton, M.Resilience Organizing, NASA, Johnson Space Center, Mission Control, Houston, TX, 2018
  • Barton, M., Kahn, W.Group resilience: The place and meaning of relational pauses, 2018
  • Barton, M.Group resilience in action, Harvard Graduate School of Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education, 2018
  • Barton, M.Leading in times of uncertainty, Boston Club, 2017
  • Barton, M., Sutcliffe, K.Resilience in Interaction, 2017
  • Barton, M., Sutcliffe, K.Contextualized engagement as resilience-in-action, Copenhagen, Denmark, 2017
  • Barton, M.Productive Disruptions, Harvard School of Education, 2015
  • Barton, M.Knowledge Sharing, Harvard Business School, 2015
  • Barton, M.Productive Disruptions, Davis, California, 2014
  • Barton, M.Productive Disruptions: Military handoffs as opportunities for mindful sensemaking, 2013
  • Barton, M.Overcoming Dysfunctional Momentum, United States Military Academy, West Point, 2013
  • Barton, M.Efficient realignment: Managing uncertainty and equivocality in the entrepreneurial process, Academy of Management, Boston, MA, 2012
  • Barton, M.Learning when to stop momentum, 2012
  • Barton, M., Vogus, T., Sutcliffe, K.Enabling Fluid Awareness for Resilient Performance, Kos, Greece, 2012
  • Barton, M.Shaping entrepreneurial opportunities. Presented as part of the symposium “Transitions in understanding: Exploring how understanding evolves in dynamic contexts.”, San Antonio, TX, 2011
  • Barton, M.Overcoming dysfunctional momentum, Army Northern Regional Medical Command, Kentucky, USA, 2011
  • Barton, M.Managing momentum in crisis events, New Orleans, LA, 2010
  • Barton, M., Bunderson, .Assessing relative member expertise in groups: An expertise dependence perspective, Academy of Management, Chicago, IL, 2009
  • Barton, M.The Emergence of entrepreneurial opportunities, National Academy of Management, Chicago, IL, 2009
  • Barton, M., Bunderson, J.Status and expertise in groups, Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, New Orleans, LA, 2009
  • Barton, M., Christianson, M.Studying complex interdependent work: A methodological toolkit. PDW. National Academy of Management Meeting, Anaheim, CA.Barton, M.A., National Academy of Management, Anaheim, CA, 2008
  • Barton, M., Sutcliffe, K.Overcoming dysfunctional momentum, National Academy of Management, Anaheim, CA, 2008
  • Barton, M.Group Innovation, Department of Homeland Security, Washington, D.C., 2007
  • Barton, M.Attributing task expertise in temporary teams, National Academy of Management, Philadelphia, PA, 2007
  • Barton, M.Resilient response: The role of collective knowledge, National Academy of Management, Atlanta, GA, 2006
    Conference Activities
  • Academy of Management, Managerial and Organizational Cognition Division, Executive Committee, Representative-at-Large, Committee Member (2012-2015)
    Awards and Honors
  • 2014, Broderick Award for Outstanding Teaching
  • 2012, Outstanding Reviewer Award, Academy of Management - MOC Division
  • 2011, Finalist for Outstanding Practitioner-Oriented Publication in OB, Academy of Management
  • 2010, Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship, University of Michigan
  • 2008, Kauffman Fellowship, Kauffman Foundation