• Phone: 617-358-6073
  • E-Mail:  somahony@bu.edu
  • Office: 658A
  • Office Hours: By Appointment
  • Address: Boston University School of Management
    595 Commonwealth Avenue
    Boston, MA 02215

Profile Summary

Professor O’Mahony is Chair of the Strategy and Innovation Department. Her research explores how technical and creative projects organize for innovation. She has examined how high technology contractors, open source programmers, artists, music producers, internet startups and product development teams coordinate their efforts in projects, teams and communities. She is interested in how people create organizing structures that promote innovation, creativity and growth without replicating the bureaucratic structures they strive to avoid. Dr. O’Mahony’s research has appeared in Administrative Science Quarterly, Organization Science, Academy of Management Journal, Research in Organizational Behavior, Research Policy, Research in the Sociology of Organizations, Industry and Innovation, and the Journal of Management and Governance. A former consultant with Price Waterhouse LLP and Electronic Data Systems, she has consulted to organizations such as IDEO, the Global Business Network, Novell, Cap Gemini, Proquest, Microsoft, McDonald Investments, and the European Union.

  • Education Open or Close

    Ph D, Stanford University, Management Science and Engineering, 2002.

    MPA - Masters in Public Administration, Cornell University School of Public Affairs, Science and Technology Policy, 1993.

    BS, Cornell University School of Industrial Labor Relations, Organizational Behavior, 1991.

  • PublicationsOpen or Close

    Journal Articles:

      O'Mahony, S., Seidel, V., (2014). Managing the Repertoire: Stories, Metaphors, Prototypes and Concept Coherence in Product Innovation. Organization Science,

      O'Mahony, S., Lakhani, K. L., (2011). Organizations in the Shadow of Communities. Research in the Sociology of Organizations,

      O'Mahony, S., Dahlander, L., (2011). Progressing to the Center: Coordinating Knowledge Work. Organization Science, 22(4), 961-979.

      O'Mahony, S., Lingo, E. L., (2010). Nexus Work: Brokerage on Creative Projects. Administrative Science Quarterly, 55(1), 47-81. Ithaca, NY.


      O'Mahony, S., Chen, K., (2009). Differentiating Organizational Boundaries. Research in Sociology of Organization,

      O'Mahony, S., Kochan, T. A., Guillen, M. F., Hunter, L. W., (2009). Introduction to the Special Research Forum - Public Policy and Management Research: Find the Common Ground. Academy of Management Journal, 52(6), 1088-1100.

    Working Papers:

      O'Mahony, S., Bechky, B., Leveraging Comparative Field Data for Theory Generation. : Rouledge, Taylor and Francis Groiup.


      O'Mahony, S., Dahlander, L., One Foot In, One Foot Out: How Individual Search Behavior Affects Innovation Outcomes. : Strategic Management Journal .


      O'Mahony, S., Besharov, M., Selective Synthesis: How Communities Manage the Formalization Dilemma.

      O'Mahony, S., Massa, F., Taming Trolls: Coordinating Community Action in Dynamic Online Environment.

      O'Mahony, S., Kirtley, J., The Startup Paradox: Pivot on Dime or Stick to Your Knitting?.

  • Editorial And Review ActivitiesOpen or Close

    O'Mahony, S., Administrative Science Quarterly, Editorial Board Member, International, Standing Editorship (Edited Multiple Publications), Appointed, Academic. (December 1, 2013 - Present).

    O'Mahony, S., Academy of Management Journal, Editorial Board Member, International, Standing Editorship (Edited Multiple Publications), Appointed, Academic. (January 1, 2012 - Present).

  • Academic, Military and Professional PositionsOpen or Close

    Assistant Professor, UC Davis GSM. (July 1, 2007 - June 30, 2009).

    Assistant Professor, Harvard Business School. (July 1, 2002 - June 30, 2007).

  • DirectorshipOpen or Close

    Board Director, Sustainable Nantucket