Lisa Nishii joined the faculty of the Human Resource Studies department at the ILR School, Cornell University after receiving her Ph.D. and M.A. in Organizational Psychology from the University of Maryland, and a B.A in economics from Wellesley College.
Nishii is an expert on inclusion in organizations. Her research focuses on the confluence of organizational practices, leadership behaviors, and climate for inclusion on individual- and group-level outcomes. Using multi-level and multi-method research designs across a number of large-scale federally funded projects, she has found that leaders play an important role in shaping inclusion. In particular, the extent to which leaders role model inclusive behaviors, clarify the learning and innovation benefits of diversity for the group’s work, and set strong norms related to interpersonal interactions, determines the inclusiveness of their workgroup climates. In turn, workgroup climate has important implications for the authenticity of the relationship that group members develop, the positive versus negative quality of relational ties, the information that is shared among group members, the extent of conflict that is experienced, and ultimately the creativity, financial performance, and turnover rates associated with these groups. Workgroup climate also impacts individual-level experiences of discrimination versus inclusion, as well as engagement and performance. She is currently developing and testing the effectiveness of training interventions for leaders as well as for in-tact teams on how to cultivate workgroup inclusion. Nishii’s earlier research focused primarily on diversity in individual-level cognition and behavior as determined by national culture.
Nishii actively publishes in top-tier journals, including the Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Applied Psychology, Personnel Psychology, and Science, and serves on the editorial boards for AMR, AMJ, and JAP. She is currently the Chair of the Academy of Management’s Gender and Diversity in Organizations Division, and the Chair of the ILR School’s International Programs. She serves on a variety of college and university-level councils for diversity, globalization, and engaged learning. Nishii also consults with multinational companies, primarily related to diversity and inclusion and organizational assessment.