MGCR 423 Organizational Policy
Yuan Li joined McGill as assistant professor of Strategy and Organization in the Desautels Faculty of Management in 2009. She earned her Ph.D. in Business Administration from the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California.
Professor Li’s research is broadly concerned with the symbolic aspect of management and organization. She analyzes the role of language in the construction of motives, actions, meaning, and institutions. She employs various analytical lenses, such as discourse analysis, rhetoric, and semiotics, to study (1) how symbols shape material reality; and (2) how the symbolic and the material co-evolve.
The empirical setting most suitable to the study of meaning and symbols seems to be changes that are radical in nature and settings characterized by conflicting or contradictory logics. An earlier study examines the diffusion of Total Quality Management, a managerial revolution that completely reversed American managers’ belief about how quality is related to costs. Currently, Professor Li is conducting research on the rhetoric of China’s market-based transition, the evolution of organizational forms of Chinese companies, and the history and present condition of Chinese private entrepreneurs. Contemporary China has undergone fundamental transformations of its economic outlook, yet is still struggling with naming the change and making meaning. How and why organizations and institutions change beliefs and navigate contradictions remains a mystery and lies at the center of Professor Li’s intellectual curiosity.
Professor Li has received a one-year New Scholar Research Grant and a three-year Standard Research Grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). She has presented her work at the annual meetings of the Academy of Management (AoM), American Sociological Association (ASA), National Communications Association (NCA), and Critical Management Studies (CMS) workshops.
Professor Li teaches Organizational Policy, a capstone strategy course for undergraduate students (MGCR 423).