The Human Relations Studies – Hawthorne’s experiments in an online exhibition at HBS Library

I just found a link to a great historic collection at the HBS Baker library: They have created an online exhibition on Hawthorne’s experiments with pictures, historical information, essays, papers and links.

Together with Roethlisberger back in the 1920s Hawthorne conducted a study on work behavior at Western Electric.

I like the way they have motivated why they thought that interviews were the way to go:

I think interviewing is a good idea. It helps some people get a lot of things off their chest.

The “Hawthorne effect” generally refers to the phenomenon in which subjects in behavioral studies change their performance in response to being observed.


About Ines Mergel

I am Full Professor of Public Administration at the Department of Politics and Public Administration at University of Konstanz, Germany. Previously, I served as Assistant and then Associate Professor (with tenure) at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University, NY. In my research, I focus on informal social networks in the public sector and the adoption and diffusion of digital service innovations in government organizations. I teach classes on social media management, digital government, public management, and social network analysis.

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