Battilana and co-author win the AOM’s book award for Power, for All: How It Really Works and Why It’s Everyone’s Business; she is also awarded a fellowship.

Professor Julie Battilana, the founder and faculty chair of the Social Innovation + Change Initiative at Harvard Kennedy School, has won the prestigious George R. Terry Book Award for 2022 from the Academy of Management. 

Together with co-author Tiziana Casciaro of the University of Toronto, Battilana won the award for Power, for All: How It Really Works and Why It’s Everyone’s Business. The award is given annually to the book judged to have made the most outstanding contribution to the global advancement of management knowledge during the past two years.

“I am both grateful and humbled to receive the Academy of Management’s George R. Terry Book Award for Power, for All,” Battilana said. “Tiziana Casciaro and I wrote this book with the intention to democratize access to power, and in the process to dispel some common but dangerous misconceptions about power that we have encountered in our decades researching and teaching on the topic. We are thrilled at the positive response the book has received so far, and are hopeful that it will prove useful both to academics researching and teaching this content and to those outside academia trying to better understand the fundamentals of how power works and how to leverage it for positive impact at home, in the workplace, and in the world more broadly."

In their review of Power for All, the selection committee wrote that the book serves an important purpose by offering “useful frameworks for practitioners, students, and researchers to study power and use it ethically.”

“We are living in a time in which the negative aspects of power and the brute moves to acquire it are everywhere—from geopolitics to local school boards,” the committee stated. “Yet this also means it is a time in which understanding how this is being accomplished is essential. Then we can begin to see the possibilities of power as a means of liberation and transformation.”

In the book, Battilana and Casciaro attempt to both demystify and democratize power, writing that it is one of the most misunderstood—and consequently vilified—concepts in society. While many people assume power is predetermined by personality or wealth, or view it as “dirty” and want nothing to do with it, the authors argue that people must choose between embracing power or giving it up to others who may not have their best interests in mind.

In June, Battilana was also honored by the Academy of Management as one of their 17 AOM Fellows for 2022. 

Battilana is the Alan L. Gleitsman Professor of Social Innovation at the Kennedy School and the Joseph C. Wilson Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. She focuses her research on the politics of change in organizations and in society, while teaching on power and leadership. She is also the co-founder of the Democratizing Work initiative, a global alliance of researchers and practitioners collaborating toward a more just, green, and fair economic system. 

Casciaro is a professor of organizational behavior at the Rotman School of Management, and the Marcel Desautels Chair in Integrative Thinking at the University of Toronto.