Eric Knight

Photo of 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

Selected publications

2019

Journal Articles

Knight E, and Cuganesan S (2019) Enabling organizational ambidexterity: Valuation practices and the senior-leadership team Human Relations, In Press. [More Information]

Knight E, and Tsoukas H (2019) When Fiction Trumps Truth: What 'post-truth' and 'alternative facts' mean for management studies Organization Studies, 40 (2), 183-197. [More Information]

Wojcik D, Pazitka V, Knight E, and O'Neill P (2019) Investment banking centres since the global financial crisis: New typology, ranking and trends Environment and Planning A, In Press. [More Information]

Book Chapters

Knight E, and Paroutis S (2019) How Visual Methods can Enhance our Understanding of Strategy and Management Research Methodology in Strategy and Management; Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley UK.

Paroutis S, and Knight E (2019) Visuals in Open Strategy Cambridge Handbook of Open Strategy; Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.

2018

Journal Articles

Knight E, Paroutis S, and Heracleous L (2018) The Power of Powerpoint: A Visual Perspective on Meaning Making in Strategy Strategic Management Journal, 39 (3), 894-921. [More Information]

O'Neill P, Knight E, and Wojcik D (2018) Australia's shifting global engagement: the stuttering rise of financial services and city-based competitiveness Australian Geographer, 49 (3), 349-364. [More Information]

Wojcik D, Knight E, and Pazitka V (2018) What turns cities into international financial centres? Analysis of cross-border investment banking 2000-2014 Journal of Economic Geography, 18 (1), 1-33. [More Information]

Wojcik D, Knight E, O'Neill P, and Pazitka V (2018) Economic Geography of Investment Banking Since 2008: The Geography of Shrinkage and Shift Economic Geography, 94 (4), 376-399. [More Information]

Conference Proceedings

Hahn T, and Knight E (2018) The nature of organizational paradox: a view from quantum theory 78th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management (Aom 2018); Academy of Management, Chicago, USA.

Hahn T, and Knight E (2018) The nature of organizational paradox: a view from quantum theory 34th European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS) Colloquium; European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS), Tannin, Estonia. [More Information]

Knight E, and Wojcik D (2018) Financial technology (FinTech) and the spatial economy 5th Global Conference on Economic Geography (GCEG 2018); University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany.

Knight E, Grimes M, and Gehman J (2018) Pivoting in action: how repositioning successive change as scientific revision enables managerial discretion 78th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management (Aom 2018); Academy of Management, Chicago, USA.

Knight E, Wojcik D, and O'Neill P (2018) Firm internationalization strategy: Strategy-as-Practice perspective on Global Production Networks 78th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management (Aom 2018); Academy of Management, Chicago, USA. [More Information]

Seminar Papers

Knight E (2018) Massive Open Online Courses: Design Strategy & Innovation Through Design NSW Department of Industry launch; NSW Department of Industry, Sydney, Australia.

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

Knight E (2018) Challenges publishing novel methods in top-tiered journals, Advancing SAP Research - an interactive workshop for doctoral and early career researchers 78th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management (Aom 2018); Academy of Management, Chicago, USA.

Knight E, Le J, Stanske S, and Wenzel M (2018) Theorizing process research: Perspectives in conversation, AOM Symposium 78th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management (Aom 2018); Academy of Management, Chicago, USA.

Knight E, Wojcik D, and O'Neill P (2018) Dynamic Global Production Networks: a practice theoretical perspective of network-ing in a financial services supply chain Utrecht University School of Economics; Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands.

2017

Journal Articles

Harvey W, Tourky M, Knight E, and Kitchen P (2017) Lens or Prism? How organisations sustain multiple and competing reputations European Journal of Marketing, 51 (4), 821-844. [More Information]

Knight E, and Paroutis S (2017) Becoming Salient: The TMT Leader's Role in Shaping the Interpretive Context of Paradoxical Tensions Organization Studies, 38 (3-4), 403-432. [More Information]

Knight E, and Wojcik D (2017) Geographical linkages in the financial services industry: a dialogue with organizational studies Regional Studies, 51 (1), 116-127. [More Information]

Conference Proceedings

Grant G, Knight E, and Cuganesan S (2017) Between community and corporate: How top management teams experience paradoxical demands in strategising 33rd EGOS Colloquium: The Good Organization; European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS), Copenhagen, Denmark.

Knight E, Paroutis S, and Heracleous L (2017) Visual Control: how PowerPoint use influence the strategy process 33rd EGOS Colloquium: The Good Organization; European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS), Copenhagen, Denmark.

Knight E, Wojcik D, and O'Neill P (2017) Visible Presence: how fintech firms internationalize Association of American Geographers (AAG) Annual Meeting 2017; Association of American Geographers (AAG), Boston, United States.

Wojcik D, Knight E, and Pazitka V (2017) Investment banking centres since Lehman Brothers Association of American Geographers (AAG) Annual Meeting 2017; Association of American Geographers (AAG), Boston, United States.

Book Chapter

Knight E, and Paroutis S (2017) Expanding the paradox - pedagogy links: Paradox as a Threshold Concept in Management Education The Oxford Handbook of Organizational Paradox; Oxford University Press, Oxford, 529-546. [More Information]

2016

Journal Articles

Cutcher-Gershenfeld J, Baker K, Berente N, Carter D, Dechurch L, Flint C, Gershenfeld G, Haberman M, King J, Kirkpatrick C, Knight E, and et al (2016) Build It, But Will They Come? A Geoscience Cyberinfrastructure Baseline Analysis Data Science Journal, 15, 1-14. [More Information]

Knight E, and Sharma R (2016) Infrastructure as a traded product: A relational approach to finance in practice Journal of Economic Geography, 16 (4), 897-916. [More Information]

Sharma R, and Knight E (2016) The Role of Information Density in Infrastructure Investment Growth and Change, 47 (4), 520-534. [More Information]

Conference Proceedings

Knight E (2016) Incorporating lower level managers' reflexivity into organizational ambidexterity 76th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management; Academy of Management, New York, United States.

Knight E, 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) 76th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management; Academy of Management, New York, United States.

Knight E, and Paroutis S (2016) Orchestrating Noise: Paradox Recognition in a Media Organization 36th Strategic Management Society (SMS) Annual International Conference; Strategic Management Society, Chicago, USA.

Knight E, Paroutis S, and Heracleous L (2016) A Visual Approach on Strategy: The Visual-Talk Interplay in Powerpoint 30th Annual Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management Conference (ANZAM 2016); Australia and New Zealand Academy of Management (ANZAM), Brisbane, Australia.

2015

Journal Articles

Knight E (2015) Book Review: Tor Hernes - A Process Theory of Organization Organization Studies, 36 (10), 1423-1426. [More Information]

Knight E, and Harvey W (2015) Managing exploration and exploitation paradoxes in creative organisations Management Decision, 53 (4), 809-827. [More Information]

Knight E, and Knox-Hayes J (2015) Creating legitimate authority for environmental governance and new market creation: A case study from Australia Competition and Change, 19 (1), 36-55. [More Information]

Knight E, and Meade J (2015) Managing Productivity in the Infrastructure Sector: a Case Study from Indonesia Economics and Finance in Indonesia/Ekonomi dan Keuangan Indonesia, 61 (3), 214-222.

Knight E, Cutcher-Gershenfeld J, and Middleman B (2015) The Art of Managing Complex Collaborations MIT Sloan Management Review, 57 (1), 16-19.

Conference Proceedings

Knight E, and Hall R (2015) The role of experiential learning environments in developing paradoxical leadership 75th Academy of management conference, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Knight E, Sturdy A, and O'Mahoney J (2015) Strategy as structuring? CSO occupational backgrounds and agency in corporations 31st EGOS Colloquium: Examined Life - Reason, Reflexivity and Responsibility; European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS), Athens, Greece.

Wojcik D, Knight E, and Pazitka V (2015) What turns cities into financial centres? 4th Global Conference on Economic Geography (GCEG); Global Economic Geography, Oxford, United Kingdom.

Book Chapter

Knight E (2015) Market design and maturity in the Asia Pacific Research Handbook on Climate Change Mitigation Law; Edward Elgar Publishing, Cheltenham, 499-506. [More Information]

Reports

Knight E, and Wojcik D (2015) International Competitiveness of Australia's Financial Services Sector: Fulfilling the Mandate of the Financial System Inquiry.

Wojcik D, Knight E, and Pazitka V (2015) What turns cites into international financial centres?; The Centre for International Finance and Regulation, Sydney, 1-37.

2014

Journal Article

Knight E, 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, 3 (3), 10-17.

Conference Proceedings

Cutcher-Gershenfeld J, Mittleman B, and Knight E (2014) Pre-competitive Institutional Arrangements in the Biosciences 66th Annual Meeting of the Labor and Employment Relations Association; Labor and Employment Relations Association (LERA formerly IRRA), Portland, United States.

Knight E, and Cuganesan S (2014) The Role of Top Management Teams in Enabling and Sustaining Contextual Ambidexterity 74th Academy of management conference; Academy of Management, Philadelphia, PA, USA.

Knight E, and Sharma R (2014) Towards a dynamic model for financial product evolution: the case of infrastructure investment Association of American Geographers (AAG) Annual Meeting 2014; Association of American Geographers (AAG), Tampa, United States.

Newspaper Articles

Knight E (2014) The Art of Corporate Endurance Harvard Business Review .

Knight E (2014) Comment to Quarterly Essay 54: A Rightful Place: Race, recognition and a more complete commonwealth.

Knight E (2014) Three Imperatives for Good Project Managers Harvard Business Review .

2013

Journal Article

Bolukbasi B, Berente N, Cutcher-Gershenfeld J, Dechurch L, Flint C, Haberman M, King J, Knight E, Lawrence B, Masella E, and et al (2013) Open data: Crediting a culture of cooperation Science, 342 (6162), 1041-1042. [More Information]

Book

Knight E (2013) Why We Argue About Climate Change; Black Inc. Redback, Collingwood, Australia.

2012

Journal Articles

Knight E (2012) The Economic Geography of Financing Clean Energy Technologies Competition and Change, 16 (2), 77-90. [More Information]

Knight E (2012) Five Perspectives on an Emerging Market: Challenges with Clean Tech Private Equity Journal of Alternative Investments, 14 (3), 76-81. [More Information]

Knight E (2012) China’s new approach to renewable energy East Asia Forum Quarterly, 4 (4), 1-3.

Book

Knight E (2012) Reframe: How to Solve the Worlds Trickiest Problems; Black Inc, Collingwood, Australia.

Book Chapter

Knight E (2012) The Sun King The Best Australian Business Writing 2012; NewSouth Publishing, Sydney, Australia, 170-180.

2011

Journal Articles

Clark G, and Knight E (2011) Temptation and the Virtues of Long-Term Commitment: The Governance of Sovereign Wealth Fund Investment Asian Journal of International Law, 1 (2), 321-348. [More Information]

Knight E (2011) The economic geography of European carbon market trading Journal of Economic Geography, 11 (5), 817-841. [More Information]

Book Chapter

Knight E, and Dixon A (2011) The Role of Investment Consultants in Transforming Pension Fund Decision Making: The Integration of Environmental, Social, and Governance Considerations into Corporate Valuation Corporate Governance Failures: The Role of Institutional Investors in the Global Financial Crisis; University of Pennsylvania Press, Pennsylvania, 217-241.

Newspaper Articles

Knight E (2011) Comment to Quarterly Essay 42: Fair Share – Country and City in Australia.

Knight E (2011) Essay: The Sun King The Monthly - June 2011 .

Report

Howes S, Downes P, and Knight E (2011) Climate Change and Fiscal Policy: A Report for APEC | Chapter 2 - The instruments: fiscal policies for mitigation; The World Bank, Washington, DC, 18-36.

2009

Journal Articles

Clark G, and Knight E (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, 11 (2), 259-296.

Clark G, and Knight E (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, 11 (2), 259-296.

Knight E (2009) Who is paying to de-carbonise the global economy? East Asia Forum Quarterly, 1-3.

Knight E (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, 85 (1).

Conference Proceedings

Knight E (2009) The role of asset consulting companies in transforming investment decision making: the global financial crisis and the challenge of responsible investment Elfenworks Centre for Fiduciary Capitalism conference (FIDCAP 2009); St Mary's College of California, California, United States.

Knight E (2009) The economic geography of carbon trading oikos / PRI Young Scholars Finance Academy Conference 2009, Gais, Switzerland.

Knight E (2009) The economic implications of carbon trading across geographies European Association of Environmental and Resource Economics, 17th Annual Conference; Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Amsterdam.

Knight E (2009) The role of non-financial considerations in the finance sector: the role of asset consulting companies 2nd Annual PRI Academic Conference; Principles for Responsible Investment Academic Network, Ottawa, Canada.

Report

Waygood S, Hilton P, McQuillen M, Joly C, and Knight E (2009) Fiduciary Responsibility | Part II: Survey of investment management consulting firms on the integration of ESG into the investment process; United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative, Geneva, 32-46.

s

Knight E (2009) "The post-20I2 international financing framework: the path for Indonesia", Indonesian Ministry of Finance at invitation of World Bank, Jakarta, 20 April 2009..

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

Knight E (2009) "Remaking the financial model: corporate finance and climate change", Oxford Achilles Working Group on Corporate Social Responsibility presentation at Said Business School, Oxford, I 8 February 2009..

2008

Journal Article

Doornbosch R, and Knight E (2008) What role for public finance in international climate change mitigation? Round Table on Sustainable Development, 3, 1-41.

Conference Proceeding

Knight E (2008) Using private law remedies to turn corporate values into climate change solutions 38th St. Gallen Symposium; International Students' Committee (ISC), Gallen, Switzerland.

Book Chapter

Miller M, Wilder M, and Knight E (2008) Legal Issues and Contractual Solutions for LULUCF Projects under the Clean Development Mechanism Climate Change and Forests: Emerging Policy and Market Opportunities; Brookings Institution Press, Baltimore, United States, 163-176.

Report

Doornbosch R, and Knight E (2008) Discussion Paper: What Role for Public Finance in International Climate Change Mitigation; Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Paris, 4-41.

Recent Units Taught

  • SMBA6201 Design Strategy: MBA Capstone

  • WORK2222 Leadership in Organisations

Newsroom articles

  • Eric Knight in The Australian 06 Feb 2019

    The Australian

    The Australian published an article by Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research – Enterprise and Engagement) Associate Professor Eric Knight about the changing nature of university education.

  • Here's why Donald Trump's tweets might be more sophisticated than you think 27 Sep 2018

    Financial Times

    Business Insider quoted Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research – Enterprise and Engagement) Associate Professor Eric Knight from the Business School about his research into the communication style of US President Donald Trump’s tweets.

  • Rethinking the place of the Chinese student at Australian universities 05 Aug 2018

    Australian Financial Review

    The growth in Chinese student enrolments in Australian institutions of higher education offers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to build strategic ties in the region. But recent debate suggests that political and business leaders don't necessarily appreciate the nature of the economic opportunity.

  • 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.

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   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   Watch on YouTube


Visit The University of Sydney Business School YouTube Channel