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University of Delaware - Alfred Lerner College of Business & Economics

By Jen Hendrickson December 20, 2019

University of Delaware professor of management Wendy Smith is cited among top 1% of influential researchers in business and economics, according to the Web of Science Group’s 2019 Highly Cited Researchers list.

The global indexing service identifies researchers in the sciences and social sciences who produced multiple publications ranking in the top 1% by citations for their field and year of publication over the past decade, demonstrating significant research influence among their peers.

Smith is co-director of the Women’s Leadership Initiative at UD, and she is developing a paradoxical approach to managing the challenges that individuals and leaders of organizations face. She is exploring how people tend to look at tensions as either/or choices, and how a both/and approach can open up new possibilities that are more creative and sustainable.

“An example from my own research focuses on how organizations can address both social missions and sustainability and financial demands simultaneously,” she said. “What I am most proud of is that more and more academics are using these ideas to help explain complex dynamics, and therefore helping people more effectively navigate those dynamics to lead to more effective companies and to a better world.”

When asked about how she creates such impactful research articles, Smith said she does her best writing in collaboration.

“Usually, if I have a difficult part of a paper to write, I will schedule a meeting with coauthors, talk it through, and then block out a good portion of time right after to capture those ideas on paper,” Smith said. “Coffee helps a lot. So does daily exercise!”

Smith received her doctorate in organizational behavior from Harvard. She joined the UD faculty in 2006.

The 2019 Highly Cited Researchers list also included five other UD professors. Cathy Wu, Cecilia Arighi and Hongzhan Huang were recognized for their impact in biology and biochemistry; Rodrigo Vargas and Yushan Yan were recognized in the “cross-field” category.