Laura Black



Dr. Laura Black

Professor of Management

Office: 448 Jabs Hall


Phone: (406) 994-2056

BMIS 211 - Intro to Bus Decision Support
BMGT 491 - Freelance Economy



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Research Interests

Collaborative processes for innovation

Participatory modeling for decision making and collective impact

Organizational change

Women entrepreneurs

Expertise & Service

  • Effective Meetings: Reducing the Pain, Increasing the Gain (1/2 day training), Developing Excellence in Academic Learning (DEAL) Program, Montana State University
  • Leading and Communicating Change (½-day training), Developing Excellence in Academic
    Leadership (DEAL) Program, Montana State University
  • Managing Change (executive education one-day workshop), Management Institute, College
    of Business, Montana State University
  • Productive Reasoning and Communication, 2-day workshop on principles and tools of action
    research, FedEx


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Dr. Laura Black studies collaborative practices, particularly in the context of new product development and innovation.  She also studies women entrepreneurs and “human-scale” businesses.  She has worked as a program manager and internal consultant at FedEx and as an editor of a travel magazine in Texas.  She has consulted in the pharmaceutical, aerospace, and nonprofit domains and recently co-founded Human Scale Business, a Benefit corporation.

Google Scholar profile:

ResearchGate profile:

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Selected Publications

  • "When Visuals Are Boundary Objects in System Dynamics Work," System Dynamics Review, 29 (2): 70-86. doi: 10.1002/sdr.1496. (2013)
  • "Learning from Our GWAS Mistakes: From Experimental Design to Scientific Method," Biostatistics, 13 (2): 195-203. doi:10.1093/biostatistics/kxr055 (2012)
  • "Using Visual Representations as Boundary Objects to Resolve Conflict in Collaborative Model-Building," Systems Research and Behavioral Science, 29: 194-208.doi: 10.1002/sres.2106. (2012)

  • "Knowledge-sharing and Trust in Collaborative Requirements Analysis," System Dynamics Review, 24 (3): 265-297 (2008)

  • "A Dynamic Theory of Expertise and Occupational Boundaries in New Technology Implementation:  Building on Barley’s Study of CT-Scanning," Administrative Science Quarterly, 49 (4): 572-607 (2004)


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  • National Science Foundation, Virtual Organizations as Sociotechnical Systems (VOSS), “VOSS: Constructing and Modifying Meaning in Complex Projects,” September 2008 – August 2009, $100,626 (NSF Grant No. OCI-0838317) Principal Investigator (with co-PIs from Montana State University, Aerospace Corporation, Boston University, and University at Albany)

  • Montana State University, with funding from the National Science Foundation, ADVANCE Leadership Award Grants for Women Faculty, 2009-2010, $10,557

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Ph.D. System Dynamics / Operational Management and Organization Studies, MIT, Cambridge, MA, 2002

M.B.A. Information Systems Management, with honors, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, 1993

B.A., College of Liberal Arts Honors Program, with high honors, the University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, 1985


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