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Bruce Kennedy Memorial Ethical Leadership Visiting Scholar - Kent Miller

Wednesday, May 15, 2013, 10 a.m.–
Friday, May 17, 2013, 4 p.m.

Dr. Miller was on the SPU campus May 15-17 to meet with students, business leaders, and faculty around two very interesting topics:

"Management Research as Practical Theology"

Dr. Miller presented and discussed a draft of his paper "Management Research as Practical Theology" with faculty members. Here is a synopsis of the paper:

"Secularism is a prevailing norm for scholarly management research, yet the post-secular turn in philosophy provides an opening for researchers to work from theological perspectives and inquire into management topics of theological concern. This study introduces practical theology as a method for pursuing management research. This method involves iterative, mutual engagement with empirical data, social theories, and theological traditions. Research done as practical theology can contribute to advancing management theory and practice by promoting critical awareness of theological assumptions operating in our research and organizations, and by motivating constructive proposals that are unreachable from a secular perspective."

"Organizing with the Spirit"

Dr. Miller also gave a presentation and workshop on "Organizing with the Spirit," the topic of his most current work and research. He sums it up this way:

"This study raises the possibility of imagining the managerial proces of organizing as collaboration with God's Spirit. A spirituality that acknowledges the Spirit's presence and agency in organizations contrasts with other forms of workplace spirituality based on members' personal identities. Working from Christian theologies of the Spirit across diverse traditions, this study addresses the Spirit's essential agentic role in organizing social systems. Three interrelated facets characterize the Spirit's work among people: 1) divine-human and social relationality, 2) strategy linked to God's mission, and 3) illumination for practical guidance. Focusing on the Spirit's role in social systems supports a social imaginary centered on divine-human interaction and spiritual practices expressing synergistic cooperation with the Spirit."

Dr. Miller spoke on May 15, 6–7 p.m. in Eaton Hall Room 112.

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