Abstract: Recent years have seen significant increases in disruptions to the workplace, resulting in unique challenges for individuals in their understanding of a dramatically shifting landscape and how they fit in it. This talk explores recent grounded theory on how individuals move forward professionally after experiencing simultaneous disruption across several domains (e.g., personal, organizational, and social). I draw upon in-progress studies using longitudinal qualitative data of refugees who left their work, homes, and social network—under significant duress—in an attempt to start anew in a host country context, and seek to expand knowledge of identity reconstruction not captured in extant models—primarily due to the existence or assumptions of relatively stable contextual conditions. Specifically, I hope to share emerging insights from studies across multiple contexts (Syria, Sweden, and the United States) where refugees seek to leverage entrepreneurship as a vehicle for personal and community advancement. I elaborate on emerging theoretical models and the potential contribution they make to extant theory on identity, entrepreneurship, and community logics.
Co-authors (of the various projects): Sara Thorgren, Ramzi Fathallah, Todd Moss, Kurian George, and Maria Minnitti