Faculty Research

The Behavioral Dimension of Governing Inter-Organizational Goal Directed Networks: Managing the Unity/Diversity Tension
Network management research documents how network members engage in activities to advance their own goals. However, this literature offers little insight into the nature of work that aims to advance the goals of the network as a “whole.” By examining the behavioral dimension of network governance, this article identifies a specific tension that network leaders address to effectively govern networks: although unity and diversity are essential to network performance, each makes contradictory demands which require attention. Findings from four case studies of immigrant networks in the United States point to three activities representing mechanisms that staff of network administrative organizations use to address this (network level) managerial tension. The study proposes that unity versus diversity represents a distinct challenge to the governance of networks that requires strategic action at the whole-network level and merits further study.

Capstone: In the Field

Unrepresented Litigants' Bill of Rights for New York City Family Court (2011)

Faculty: Ana Oliveira, Dennis Smith

Team: Diana Benton, Rachael Goldstein, Jessica Harris, Amalea Smirniotopoulos

Legal Information for Families Today (LIFT) provides support and services to litigants navigating the Family Court system with­out an attorney. LIFT recognized that unrepresented litigants often do not understand their basic rights, creating a significant obstacle to their success in court. The Capstone team helped LIFT develop the first Unrepresented Litigants' Bill of Rights and provided recommenda­tions for the implementation and dissemi­nation of the document. Using surveys, interviews, and focus groups with unrep­resented litigants and court staff, the Capstone team researched how much liti­gants know about their rights, and whether the Litigants' Bill of Rights could be used in Family Court. The Bill of Rights and final report will help LIFT improve its services in Family Court and provide rec­ommendations for how to improve the overall court process.

Alumni in Action