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Eric Knight

Eric Knight


Associate Professor

Rm N4230
H70 - Abercrombie Building
The University of Sydney
NSW 2006 Australia

Telephone +61 2 9351 7391
eric.knight@sydney.edu.au

Bio

Associate Professor Eric Knight is Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research – Enterprise & Engagement) at the University of Sydney and an Associate Professor in innovation and strategic management at the University of Sydney Business School. He is a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Oxford.

Eric is a leading researcher in the fields of strategic management and economic geography. His work focuses on how organizations formulate and implement strategies, with a specific focus on the communication challenges associated with enabling strategic change, regional innovation, and social inclusion. His research has appeared in top-tier international journals including Strategic Management Journal, Organization Studies, Journal of Economic Geography, Economic Geography, and Regional Studies. He is a Rhodes Scholar and has held research grants with the Australian Research Council and industry. His work has received Best Paper awards from the Academy of Management in North America, and the Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management. His academic research underpins two books engaging a wider audience on the topic of socio-technical decision making under complexity: Reframe (2012), and Why we argue about climate change (2013).

Associate Professor Knight teaches strategy from a design thinking perspective in the undergraduate and postgraduate curriculum, and leads the capstone course of the University of Sydney Business School MBA program. His novel approach to research and teaching, known as Design Strategy, have resulted in commercially funded partnerships with Swiss Re, Optus-Singtel, and uBank. He has been awarded the Dean’s Citation for Outstanding Teaching several times and is currently supervising several PhD students.
 Eric’s service includes membership of Academic Board and the UE Research Committee at the University of Sydney. He is a Rep-at-Large in the Strategy Practice interest group of the Strategic Management Society. As well as contributing to several industry-embedded research networks, he serves as a company director on two technology-led ventures. He is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Prior to academia, he worked for several years with the Boston Consulting Group for industry and government clients in Australia and Asia.

Research Interests

Associate Professor Knight’s research interests lie at the intersection of strategic management and economic geography, with a particular interest in how organizations collaborate and strategize.  At  present he is working on two programs of work across a range of empirical contexts:

  1. Developing new theory on how change is communicated in strategic management. This is specifically focused on the novel use of visual materials within organizations, as well as how communicative practices are used to overcome breakdowns of interpretation and paradoxical tensions. This includes the novel use of ‘Design Strategy’ – a strategy tool in which design thinking informs strategy making to enable faster, more inclusive decision making. This research has implications for strategy participation and inclusion, especially for marginalized voices in the strategizing process.
  2. Investigating the nature of regional innovation and the development of ‘clusters’. This is specifically focused on how space is created to allow collaboration between organizations, industry, government, and other stakeholders to formulate and implement strategic initiatives. This research has implications for the design of smart cities and well-connected, productive regions.

Associate Professor Knight’s research expertise spans many topics in relation to the world of work, strategy, and entrepreneurship. This includes:

  • Strategic change
  • Inclusive leadership
  • Design thinking in strategy
  • Strategy tools
  • Smart cities
  • Regional innovation

2019

4
Journal Article/s

Wójcik D, Knight ERW, O’Neill P and Pažitka V 2019 Forthcoming 'Economic Geography of Investment Banking Since 2008: The Geography of Shrinkage and Shift', Economic Geography [Link]

2018

4
Journal Article/s

Wojcik D, Knight ERW and Pazitka V 2018 'What turns cities into international financial centres? Analysis of cross-border investment banking 2000-2014', Journal of Economic Geography, vol.18:1, pp. 1-33 [Link]

Knight ERW, Paroutis S and Heracleous L 2018 'The Power of Powerpoint: A Visual Perspective on Meaning Making in Strategy', Strategic Management Journal, vol.39:3, pp. 894-921 [Link]

O'Neill P, Knight ERW and Wójcik D 2018 'Australia's shifting global engagement: the stuttering rise of financial services and city-based competitiveness', Australian Geographer, vol.49:3, pp. 349-364 [Link]

10
Report/s

Knight ERW 2018 'The Australian Agricultural Sector: Industry Overview, Government Policy, and Government Intervention', Report Commissioned for Swiss Re

11
Seminar Paper/s

Knight ERW 2018 'How can diversity of thought help us meet customer needs and solve challenging business problems?, Women in Reinsurance (WiRE) 'Diversity of Thought', Sydney, Australia, 24 May 2018

2017

2
Book Section/s

Knight ERW and Paroutis S 2017 'Expanding Paradox-Pedagogy Links: Paradox as a Threshold Concept in Management Education' in The Oxford Handbook of Organizational Paradox, ed. W.K. Smith, M.W. Lewis, P. Jarzabkowski, and A. Langley, Oxford University Press, Oxford, United Kingdom, pp. 529-546 [Link]

4
Journal Article/s

Knight ERW and Wojcik D 2017 'Geographical linkages in the financial services industry: a dialogue with organizational studies', Regional Studies, vol.51:1, pp. 116-27 [Link]

Harvey W, Tourky M, Knight ERW and Kitchen P 2017 'Lens or Prism? How organisations sustain multiple and competing reputations', European Journal of Marketing, vol.51:4, pp. 821-44 [Link]

Knight ERW and Paroutis S 2017 'Becoming Salient: The TMT Leader's Role in Shaping the Interpretive Context of Paradoxical Tensions', Organization Studies, vol.38:3-4, pp. 403-432 [Link]

5
Conference Paper/s

Knight ERW, Paroutis S and Heracleous L 2017 'Visual Control: how PowerPoint use influence the strategy process', 33rd European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS) Colloquium, Copenhagen, Denmark, 8th July 2017

Grant G, Knight ERW and Cuganesan S 2017 'Between community and corporate: How top management teams experience paradoxical demands in strategising', 33rd European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS) Colloquium, Copenhagen, Denmark, 8th July 2017

Wojcik D, Knight ERW and Pazitka V 2017 'Investment banking centres since Lehman Brothers', Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting, Boston, United States, 9th April 2017

Knight ERW, Wojcik D and O’Neill P 2017 'Visible Presence: how fintech firms internationalize', Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting, Boston, United States, 9th April 2017

11
Seminar Paper/s

Knight ERW 2017 'Tracing Processes and Change: What is Quality in Qualitative Research, 2017 Academy of Management Meeting, Atlanta, Georgia, United States, 5 August 2017

Knight ERW and Paroutis S 2017 'The Role of Visuality in Strategy: how "seeing" influences "saying" and "doing", 2017 Academy of Management Meeting, Atlanta, Georgia, United States, 4 August 2017

2016

4
Journal Article/s

Sharma R and Knight ERW 2016 'The Role of Information Density in Infrastructure Investment', Growth and Change, vol.47:4, pp. 520-534 [Link]

Knight ERW and Sharma R 2016 'Infrastructure as a traded product: A relational approach to finance in practice', Journal of Economic Geography, vol.16:4, pp. 897-916 [Link]

Cutcher-Gershenfeld J, Knight ERW and et al 2016 'Build It, But Will They Come? A Geoscience Cyberinfrastructure Baseline Analysis', Data Science Journal, vol.15:8, pp. 1-14 [Link]

5
Conference Paper/s

Knight ERW, Paroutis S and Heracleous L 2016 'A Visual Approach on Strategy: The Visual-Talk Interplay in Powerpoint (Best Paper Award in the Strategic Management Conference Stream)', 30th Annual Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management ANZAM Conference 2016, Brisbane, Australia, 9th December 2016

Knight ERW and Paroutis S 2016 'Orchestrating Noise: Paradox Recognition in a Media Organization', 36th Strategic Management Society (SMS) Annual International Conference, Berlin, Germany, 20th September 2016

Knight ERW 2016 'Incorporating lower level managers' reflexivity into organizational ambidexterity', 76th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, Anaheim, United States, 9th August 2016

6
Conference Proceeding/s

Knight ERW and Grimes M 2016 'CEO sensegiving and legitimacy projection across multiple strategic change episodes (Awarded 2016 Best Paper Award in Strategizing Activities and Practices Interest Group)', Best Paper Proceedings of the 76th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, Anaheim, United States, 9th August 2016

11
Seminar Paper/s

Knight ERW 2016 'Flipped Classroom Patterns, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia, 11 October 2016

Knight ERW 2016 'A practice-based perspective on paradox: studying tensions in strategy, Academy of Management, Anaheim, United States, 9 August 2016

Knight ERW 2016 'Technology Shaping Risk, Dialogue Series - Swiss Re Australia and New Zealand, Sydney, Australia, 13 April 2016

2015

2
Book Section/s

Knight ERW 2015 'Market design and maturity in the Asia Pacific' in Research Handbook on Climate Change Mitigation Law, ed. Geert Van Calster, Wim Vandenberghe and Leonie Reins, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, United Kingdom, pp. 499-506

4
Journal Article/s

Knight ERW and Harvey W 2015 'Managing exploration and exploitation paradoxes in creative organizations', Management Decision, vol.53:4, pp. 809-27 [Link]

Knight ERW and Knox-Hayes J 2015 'Creating legitimate authority for environmental governance and new market creation: A case study from Australia', Competition and Change, vol.19:1, pp. 36-55 [Link]

Knight ERW, Cutcher-Gershenfeld J and Middleman B 2015 'The Art of Managing Complex Collaborations', MIT Sloan Management Review, vol.57:1, pp. 16-19 [Link]

Knight ERW 2015 'Book Review: Tor Hernes - A Process Theory of Organization', Organization Studies, vol.36:10, pp. 1423-26

Knight ERW and Meade JD 2015 'Managing Productivity in the Infrastructure Sector: a Case Study from Indonesia', Economics and Finance in Indonesia, vol.61:3, pp. 214-22 [Link]

5
Conference Paper/s

Wojcik D, Knight ERW and Pazitka V 2015 'What turns cities into financial centres?', 4th Global Conference on Economic Geography, University of Oxford, United Kingdom, 21st August 2015

Knight ERW and Hall R 2015 'The role of experiential learning environments in developing paradoxical leadership', 75th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, Vancouver, Canada, 11th August 2015

Knight ERW, Sturdy A and O'Mahoney J 2015 'Strategy as structuring? CSO occupational backgrounds and agency in corporations', 31st European Group of Organizational Studies EGOS Colloquium, Athens, Greece, 4th July 2015

10
Report/s

Knight ERW and Wójcik D 2015 'International Competitiveness of Australia’s Financial Services Sector: Fulfilling the Mandate of the Financial System Inquiry', Centre for International Finance and Regulation

Wójcik D, Knight ERW and Pažitka V 2015 'What turns cites into internatonal financial centres?', Centre for International Finance and Regulation Research Working Paper Series

11
Seminar Paper/s

Knight ERW and Wojcik D 2015 'Sydney as a Financial Centre: Enhancing Sydney’s Global Competitiveness in Financial Services, Centre for International Finance and Regulation Seminar presentation, Sydney, Australia, 8 December 2015

Wojcik D, Knight ERW and Pazitka V 2015 'What turns cities into financial centres?, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland, 9 October 2015

Knight ERW 2015 'Redesigning work for an Asia relevant workforce, The Royal Society of NSW and the Four Academies Forum, Sydney, Australia, 15 September 2015

Knight ERW 2015 'Ambidexterity and its implications for corporate innovation, Freehills Heads of Innovation Roundtable, Sydney, Australia, 2 September 2015

Knight ERW 2015 'How block chain technology is transforming financial services, Accenture Fintech Innovation Lab, Hong Kong, (China), 18 August 2015

Knight ERW 2015 '"Australia’s productivity conundrum: life after the mining boom", Promoting future economic prosperity in the Asian Region, Crawford School of Public Policy Seminar, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia, 16 April 2015

Knight ERW 2015 'Design thinking in the insurance sector, Swiss Re Think series, Sydney, Australia, 8 April 2015

2014

4
Journal Article/s

Knight ERW and Sharma R 2014 'Retooling in-house investment teams inside institutional investors: three perspectives on the shift towards direct infrastructure investment', Alternative Investment Analyst Review, vol.3:3, pp. 10-17

5
Conference Paper/s

Knight ERW and Cuganesan S 2014 'The Role of Top Management Teams in Enabling and Sustaining Contextual Ambidexterity', 74th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, Philadelphia, United States, 5th August 2014

Cutcher-Gershenfeld J, Mittleman B and Knight ERW 2014 'Pre-competitive Institutional Arrangements in the Biosciences', Labor and Employment Relations Association (LERA) 66th Annual Meeting, Portland, United States, 1st June 2014

Knight ERW and Sharma R 2014 'Towards a dynamic model for financial product evolution: the case of infrastructure investment', Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting: TAMPA 2014, Tampa, United States, 12th April 2014

8
Magazine Article/s

Knight ERW 2014 'Comment to Quarterly Essay 54: A Rightful Place: Race, recognition and a more complete commonwealth',

Knight ERW 2014 'Three Imperatives for Good Project Managers', Harvard Business Review Blog - 21 March [Link]

Knight ERW 2014 'The Art of Corporate Endurance', Harvard Business Review Blog - 7 April [Link]

11
Seminar Paper/s

Wojcik D and Knight ERW 2014 'International financial centres in the post-2008 era: Sydney in a global context, Centre for International Financial and Regulation Seminar, Sydney, Australia, 9 December 2014

Knight ERW 2014 'The role of top management teams in enabling and sustaining contextual ambidexterity, Work & Organizational Studies Seminar Series, University of Sydney Business School, Sydney, Australia, 13 October 2014

Knight ERW 2014 'Building fast, high performance large organisations, NAB Education, Government and Community Strategy Planning Day Keynote Presentation, Melbourne, Australia, 20 September 2014

Knight ERW 2014 'Building entrepreneurial careers in Australia, The Millennial Series, University of Sydney Business School, Sydney, Australia, 17 July 2014

2013

1
Book/s

Knight ERW 2013 'Why we argue about climate change', Black Inc, Collingwood, Australia

4
Journal Article/s

Bolukbasi B, Knight ERW and et al 2013 'Open data: Crediting a culture of cooperation', Science, vol.342, pp. 1041-2

11
Seminar Paper/s

Knight ERW 2013 'Keynote Address: Tackling Our Trickiest Problems, Green Cities 2013 Conference, Sydney, Australia, 7 March 2013

2012

1
Book/s

Knight ERW 2012 'Reframe: How to solve the world's trickiest problems', Black Inc, Collingwood, Australia [Link]

2
Book Section/s

Knight ERW 2012 'The Sun King' in Anthology of Best Business Writing in 2011, ed. A Cornell, University of New South Wales Press, Kensington, Australia

4
Journal Article/s

Knight ERW 2012 'China’s new approach to renewable energy', East Asia Forum, vol.4:4 [Link]

Knight ERW 2012 'Five perspectives on an emerging market: challenges with clean tech private equity', Journal of Alternative Investments, vol.14:3, pp. 76-81 [Link]

Knight ERW 2012 'The economic geography of financing clean tech venture capital', Competition and change, vol.16:2, pp. 77-90 [Link]

11
Seminar Paper/s

Knight ERW 2012 'China and the United States: how business can capitalise on Chinese innovation, Festival of Dangerous Ideas, Sydney Opera House, Sydney, Australia, 29 September 2012

Knight ERW 2012 'How innovation is organised, North Sydney Chamber of Commerce, North Sydney, Australia, 13 June 2012

Knight ERW 2012 'Future of business innovation and work, TEDx Hong Kong, Hong Kong, (China), 28 May 2012

Knight ERW 2012 'What's the big idea?, Sydney Writers' Festival, Sydney, Australia, 15 May 2012

Knight ERW 2012 'Reframe, Ockham’s Razor on ABC Radio National, Australia, 22 April 2012

Knight ERW 2012 'Beyond populist politics and policies, Australian National University and ABC Big Ideas Radio National, Australia, 10 April 2012

Knight ERW 2012 'Debut Mondays, The Wheeler Centre, Australia, 20 February 2012

Knight ERW 2012 'Conversation Hour with Jon Faine, ABC Melbourne Radio, Australia, 19 February 2012

Knight ERW 2012 'Drive with Richard Glover, ABC Sydney, Australia, 14 February 2012

Knight ERW 2012 'Drive with Waleed Aly, Radio National, Australia, 14 February 2012

2011

2
Book Section/s

Knight ERW and Dixon AD 2011 'The Role of Investment Consultants in Transforming Pension Fund Decision Making: The Integration of Environmental, Social, and Governance Considerations into Corporate Valuation' in Corporate Governance Failures: The Role of Institutional Investors in the Global Financial Crisis, ed. James P. Hawley, Shyam J. Kamath, and Andrew T. Williams, University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, United States, pp. 217-41

4
Journal Article/s

Clark GL and Knight ERW 2011 'Temptation and the virtues of long-term commitment: the governance of sovereign wealth fund investment', Asian Journal of International Law, vol.1:2, pp. 321-48 [Link]

Knight ERW 2011 'The Economic Geography of European Carbon Trading', Journal of Economic Geography, vol.11:5, pp. 817-41 [Link]

8
Magazine Article/s

Knight ERW 2011 'Comment to Quarterly Essay 42: Fair Share – Country and City in Australia', [Link]

Knight ERW 2011 'Essay: The Sun King', The Monthly - June 2011 [Link]

11
Seminar Paper/s

Knight ERW 2011 'Australian innovation, Saturday Extra ABC Radio National, Australia, 1 October 2011

Knight ERW 2011 'What's killing Australian innovation, Festival of Dangerous Ideas, Australia, 5 September 2011

Knight ERW 2011 'Innovation, Australia Talks, Australia, 24 August 2011

2010

11
Seminar Paper/s

Knight ERW 2010 'The power of devolution: driving investment from the periphery, Presentation at Institutional Investors and Long-term Investing workshop, Oxford University Centre for the Environment, Oxford, United Kingdom, 30 March 2010

2009

4
Journal Article/s

Knight ERW 2009 'Book review of 'The crisis of global environmental governance: towards a new political economy of sustainability', Jacob Park, Ken Conca and Matthias Finger (Editors)', International Affairs, vol.85:1

Clark GL and Knight ERW 2009 'Implications of the UK Companies Act 2006 for Institutional Investors and the Market for Corporate Social Responsibility', University of Pennsylvania Journal of Business Law, vol.11:2, pp. 259-96

Knight ERW 2009 'Who is paying to de-carbonise the global economy?', East Asia Forum, vol.1:3 [Link]

5
Conference Paper/s

Knight ERW 2009 'The role of non-financial considerations in the finance sector: the role of asset consulting companies', PRI Academic Conference, 5th October 2009

Knight ERW 2009 'The economic implications of carbon trading across geographies', European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists 17th Annual Conference, Amsterdam, Netherlands, 27th June 2009

Knight ERW 2009 'The economic geography of carbon trading', PRI Young Scholars Finance Academy conference, St Gallen University and Oikos Foundation, St Gallen, Switzerland, 11th February 2009

11
Seminar Paper/s

Knight ERW 2009 'The post-2012 international financing framework: the path for Indonesia, Indonesian Ministry of Finance at invitation of World Bank - 20 April, Jakarta, Indonesia 2009

Knight ERW 2009 'The role of asset consulting companies in transforming investment decision making: the global financial crisis and the challenge of responsible investment, Presentation to Elfenworks Centre for Fiduciary Capitalism conference, St May’s College, United States, 7 October 2009

Knight ERW 2009 'Comment on Pan, J. Chen, Y. Wang, W. (2009) China’s Carbon Budget Proposal and the International climate negotiations, Working paper for Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Crawford School of Economics and Government, ANU, Canberra, Australia, 14 April 2009

Knight ERW 2009 'Remaking the financial model: corporate finance and climate change, Presentation for Oxford Achilles Working Group on Corporate Social Responsibility presentation at Said Business School, Oxford, United Kingdom, 18 February 2009

2008

2
Book Section/s

Wilder M, Miller M and Knight ERW 2008 'Legal Issues and Contractual Solutions' in Climate Change and Forests, Emerging Policy and Market Solutions, ed. Streck C., Tarasofsky R., O'Sullivan R. & Janson-Smith T., Brookings Institute Press, Washington, DC, United States

5
Conference Paper/s

Knight ERW 2008 'Using private law remedies to turn corporate values into climate change solutions', St Gallen Symposium, St Gallen, Switzerland, 20th May 2008

10
Report/s

Doornbosch R and Knight ERW 2008 'What Role for Public Finance in International Climate Change Mitigation?', OECD Roundtable for Sustainable Development

11
Seminar Paper/s

Knight ERW 2008 'The financial challenges of addressing climate change, Presentation for Crawford School of Economics and Government, ANU, Canberra, Australia, 20 December 2008

Clark GL and Knight ERW 2008 'Institutional Investors, the Political Economy of Corporate Disclosure, and the Market for CSR: Implications from the UK Companies Act (2006), Financial Markets and Environmental Governance workshop, Oxford University Centre for the Environment, Oxford, United Kingdom, 29 May 2008

Selected grants

2018

2017-2018

2016-2018

2015

2013-2014

Recent Units Taught

  • SMBA6201 Design Strategy: MBA Capstone

    2017: Int Feb, S1,

  • WORK2222 Leadership in Organisations

    2017: S1,
    2016: S1,

Newsroom articles

  • University of Sydney offers free online courses on business innovation 21 Jun 2018

    Manufacturers' Monthly

    The NSW government is supporting the University of Sydney to deliver two free online courses to help businesses and entrepreneurs embrace innovation and grow through design thinking.

  • R&D tax bonus not only reason to work with unis 29 May 2018

    Australian Financial Review

    In corporate Australia's ongoing debate about the diversity and experience required of its directors, one perspective has gone unremarked: their connection with universities, or lack of it.

  • Building external relationships best based on two-way conversations 02 May 2018

    The Australian

    The Australian published an article by Associate Professor Eric Knight, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research – Enterprise and Engagement), about how research and industry can change how they work together for the best outcome.

  • Art of smart 27 Jul 2017

    The Bush Telegraph

    The Bush Telegraph Weekly mentioned Dr Eric Knight, Pro-Vice Chancellor (Research – Enterprise and Engagement) opened Art of Smart Education’s new campus in Hornsby.

  • University Of Sydney MBA Project Shortlisted For Blue Chilli Funding 05 Jan 2017

    MBA News

    MBA News reported MBA graduate Carla Harris has been awarded $100,000 in pre-seed funding to develop an app called Longevity, born from the University’s MBA capstone unit. Dr Eric Knight was quoted about Carla’s success and the MBA capstone.

See all Newsroom items for Eric Knight

Videos

Dr Eric Knight leads a panel discussion of industry experts on how to maintain competitive advantage in the digital age in the second Emerging Leaders Masterclass for 2015. mba.sydney.edu.au

2:15 mins Play video Download video (YouTube - Mb) Watch on YouTube


Dr Eric Knight's latest book, Why We Argue About Climate Change, takes on one of the most contentious policy issues in Australia and in international politics. He discusses what he believes to be at the heart of the debate, and the critical role of entrepreneurs and small businesses in the solution.

1:22 mins Play video Download video (YouTube - Mb) Watch on YouTube


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