Relational Coordination Research Collaborative

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Our Team

Jody Hoffer Gittell

Jody Hoffer Gittell, PhD, is a professor of management at Brandeis University's Heller School for Social Policy and Management.  She founded the Relational Coordination Research Collaborative, bringing scholars and practitioners together to help organizations build relational coordination for high performance.  She co-founded a university spinoff called Relational Coordination Analytics Inc. offering measurement and intervention support to organizations seeking to improve their performance, and serves as its Chief Scientific Officer.

Gittell has developed a theory of relational coordination, proposing that highly interdependent work is most effectively coordinated by frontline workers with each other, their customers and their leaders, through relationships of shared goals, shared knowledge and mutual respect, supported by frequent, timely, accurate, problem-solving communication.  The theory of relational coordination has two central propositions: 1) relational coordination drives quality and efficiency performance outcomes along with client and worker well-being, under conditions of interdependence, uncertainty and time constraints; and 2) organizational structures support or undermine relational coordination and its associated performance outcomes, depending upon their design.  Gittell's relational model of organizational change has extended the theory to address how organizations and their stakeholders increase relational coordination to achieve their desired outcomes, proposing three types of interventions needed to do so - relational and work process interventions, as well as structural interventions.

Gittell's research is published in a wide range of scientific journals, for example Management Science, Organization Science, Academy of Management Review, Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, Human Resource Management Journal, Human Resource Management, Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Health Services Research, Journal of Nursing Management, Medical Care, Health Care Management Review, Journal of Interprofessional Care, and Journal of Air Transport Management.  She has published five books, most recently Transforming Relationships for High Performance: The Power of Relational Coordination (2016).  Gittell received her PhD from the MIT Sloan School of Management and taught for six years at the Harvard Business School before joining Brandeis in 2001.  She currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Endowment for Health, as Treasurer for Seacoast NAACP, and on the Editorial Review Board of the Academy of Management Review

Email:  jgittell@brandeis.edu

Jody Hoffer Gittell

Lauren Hajjar, PhD, is the Director of Research at the RCRC and comes to us from the Sawyer Business School at Suffolk University where she served as a Senior Fellow and Lecturer in Public Service.  Lauren started as a direct care worker and manager in the non-profit sector, then became a researcher using qualitative and quantitative approaches to understand organizational development and change. She has worked on various state and federally funded research projects, ranging from community policing and gang violence initiatives to diversity in community healthcare organizations and outcomes evaluation for HIV and substance abuse populations. She is a peer reviewer for the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance Programs. Her research has provided important implications for how community organizations like police departments leverage human, social and organizational capital to improve outcomes. She has a strong interest in how public service organizations build strategic partnerships and encourage enhanced coordination, communication and collaboration to achieve their goals. 

Lauren is eager to partner with the RCRC community on research that explores the outcomes and drivers of relational coordination at all levels and in all contexts.  She received her MA and PhD from the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University and holds an MPA from Suffolk University. 

Email:  lhajjar@brandeis.edu

Tanya AllainTanya Allain is the RCRC Director of Partner Relations and Communications.   She is a creative problem solver who values making a difference.  Her primary role is to support our partners as they use relational coordination for research or to facilitate organizational change.  She comes to us from her role as Manager of Community Programs and Events for the Two Ten Footwear Foundation, where she created and managed partnerships with footwear companies, media partners, market research firms and universities, and where she led the Women in Footwear Industry (WIFI) program to engage and empower women in the footwear industry.  Tanya holds a BS from Roger Williams University where she was selected as the Career Center Student of the Year for excelling in an internship.  She is currently pursuing her MBA at Bentley University with a concentration in Marketing. 

Email:  tallain@brandeis.edu

Tanya Allain Jaspreet Mahal is the Research Project Manager at RCRC and comes to us with a wealth of knowledge and experience in sustainable international development and qualitative research methods. She has worked with a variety of nonprofit organizations focused on health, systems development and capacity building with government counterparts. She is particularly interested in training, team building, research and advocacy. Jaspreet is a Fullbright scholar from India and received her joint MA in Sustainable International Development and Women, Gender and Sexuality studies from the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University. She also holds a post-graduate diploma in Health and Hospital Management from the Institute of Health Management and Research, Jaipur, India. As Research Project Manager for the RCRC, Jaspreet will manage multiple research projects examining the impact of RC on outcomes within our key focus areas including innovative healthcare, community health and safety and primary and secondary education.

Email: jaspreet26@brandeis.edu

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