This study examines approaches to managing problems in research by exploring the external factors and internal organizational characteristics that shape the integrity of research at a research university. Two theoretical constructs, organizational legitimacy and organizational virtuousness, frame this analysis of systems, methods, and activities used to ensure integrity at a research university, and explore connections between them. This study is based on twenty interviews with research leaders and faculty researchers in two colleges, one representing an applied research discipline and the other a basic science discipline, at a public research-intensive university. Findings suggest that systems and mechanisms created to ensure organizational legitimacy (public trust, confidence, social responsibility) in research are fundamental to the survival of a research university, in that they convey credibility to external stakeholders. Findings also suggest that the virtues of collegiality, integrity, openness, trust, and purpose are aspirational characteristics of a desirable research environment, and organizations can promote or hinder these characteristics through formal and informal processes. Finally, the interviews indicate that university leaders see connections but not exact alignment between the actions taken to achieve organizational legitimacy and the actions taken to promote organizational virtuousness.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. May 2020. Major: Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development. Advisor: Melissa Anderson. 1 computer file (PDF); x, 259 pages.
Institutional Integrity: Perceptions Of Organizational Legitimacy And Organizational Virtuousness In A Research University Setting.
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