Daniel King

Daniel King

Associate Professor

Nottingham Business School


Daniel is the research co-ordinator for the HRM Department, a supervisor for a number of PhD and DBA students, an active researcher currently leading on an ESRC Seminar Series on Democracy and Civil Society and lecturer on Undergraduate and Postgraduate courses.

Daniel is the co-module leader for Foundations of Managing and Organising – a large module with over 1000 students which takes an innovative approach to teaching 1st year students. Using a problem-based learning approach, based around a fictional case study of Junction Hotel, students are asked to solve the challenges the hotel faces seeing these issues from the viewpoint of both managers and employees. This creative approach to the teaching has led to publication, alongside Dr Scott Lawley, of a new textbook Organizational Behaviour, published by Oxford University Press and has been adopted my many universities in the UK and worldwide. Daniel also co-module leader of the Literature Review module for the Doctor of Business Administration. Foundations of Managing and Organising.

Daniel has a number of doctoral students examining issues such as the Professionalisation of the funeral industry in Zimbabwe; the challenges of decision-making within Arabian culture; the organizational culture of Bahrain; and an ethnography of the dynamics of trust and knowledge sharing within an SME network.

Daniel is currently the Research Coordinator for the Human Resource Management Division. He organises the divisional seminar series and he is also the Nottingham Business School lead for the Course Tutorial Groups.

Daniel has consulted to a number of local SME’s around the issues of culture, productivity and organizational structure.

Daniel is an active researcher and has published in journals such as Organization Studies, Human Relations and Management Learning.

Career overview

Prior to joining NTU Daniel completed a PhD at the University of Manchester. The thesis was an ethnography of his practice as a manager of a small Voluntary and Community Organisation. Drawing on critical post-structural theory he critiqued his own practice as a manager, in particular examining the powerful manner in which he was disciplined and professionalized into being a Voluntary Sector Professional.

Daniel has worked and volunteered in the Voluntary Sector for a number of years, setting up and running small-scale charities and working in homelessness and mental health hostels. He is a co-Director of the Firebird Trust.

He completed a MSc in Research Methods (Distinction) and a degree in Business Studies (1st). He also received a distinction in his PGCE.

Daniel has also taught in Dubai, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Research areas

Daniel is a member of the Organising as Practice Research Group. Daniel's research focuses on three main, interconnected, areas:

  • the contribution critical perspectives of management can make to transforming organizational practice
  • alternative organizations and alternative ways of organising
  • critical perspectives of managing in the Third Sector.

One area that Daniel has published in is the role of critical management scholars in seeking to work with and shape organizational practice. He has examined this issue from the viewpoint of being a practitioner (see the paper in Nonprofit Voluntary Sector Quarterly and Human Relations), through being a participant (see the paper in Organization Studies) and consultant (see the paper in Scandinavian Journal of Management and Ephemera).

Another area of his research that has been published examines alternative forms of organizing, particularly those inspired by New Social Movements (see the paper in Organization Studies) and is now working on projects around deliberative democracy. This interest has underpinned his ESRC Seminar on Democracy within Civil Society and the British Academy/ Leverhulme Trust sponsored project on unconferencing. The latter project, which he is conducting with Professor Emma Bell, examines how unconferences can be more participative and democratic than traditional conferences.

The above work has developed into providing a critical consultancy project with a local charity. Together with Dr Christopher Land, University of Essex, they have been working with the local charity to transform its internal ways towards more democratic, participative and horizontal practices. This is forming the basis for a number of research articles on anarchism and practical possibilities of alternative ways of organizing.

Daniel has also been involved in setting up and participating in an alternative new social movement group. This participation has formed the basis of research with Dr Patrick Reedy and Professor Christine Coupland on identity formation within New Social Movements (see the paper in Organization Studies).

Daniel is a board member for a local music charity. Daniel is a regular convenor at the Critical Management Studies conference in a stream connecting CMS and Third Sector research. He runs the HRM seminar series and is a regular reviewer for Human Relations, Organization Studies, Organization and Management Learning.

External activity

Daniel is a Board member of the Firebird Trust, a charity and a community interest company offering music work. He is external examiner at the University of Hertfordshire.


Sponsors and collaborators

Daniel continues to work with a range of internal and external collaborators.

With Emma Bell Professor of Management and Organisation Studies, of Keele University he published a paper in Management Learning examining the learning and socialization processes of academic conferences. This research is now examining the learning potential of unconferences as alternative organizational forms funded by British Academy and the Leverhulme Trust.

Daniel is the Principal Investigator for the ESRC Seminar Series Democracy and Civil Society in collaboration with Professor Martin Parker, Dr’s Christopher Land, Martyn Griffin and Christina Schwabenland. The series has brought together academics from a range of disciplines including politics, sociology and organizational studies with practitioners and activists from cooperatives, voluntary sector and new social movements.

With Dr Scott Lawley from NTU, Daniel has co-authored the textbook Organizational Behaviour published by Oxford University Press. This book has become one of the leading Organizational Behaviour textbooks in the UK in part through its innovative pedagogical approach and also its connection between theory and practice.

He is currently writing a series of papers with Professor Mark Learmonth, Professor of Organisation Studies University of Durham on the impact that reading critical versions of management theory can have on understanding organizational practice.

He is also writing with Dr Patrick Reedy, Reeder in Organizational Behaviour at the University of Hull and the research challenges of engaging with New Social Movements.

With Dr Martyn Griffin he is working on a project examining alternative organizational forms, in particular Sociocracies and Holacracies. In particular this research seeks to connect academics with practitioners to explore how they can work together to facilitate positive change.

Daniel is also conducting research in engaged scholarship and practical alternative ways of organizing with Dr Christopher Land, Reader Division Head Management and Organization at the University of Leicester. This work was conducted in conjunction with a local charity who are seeking to develop ways of organizing that are more participative and democratic.

Daniel has also collaborated with Dr Christina Schwabenland, Reader in Public and Voluntary Sector Management at the University of Bedfordshire, to explore the possibilities and challenges of academics directly engaging with practitioners.

With Dr Amanda Hay Daniel is consulting some local SME examining their organizational structure, values and learning.

With Dr Tracey Coule, Dr Ellen Bennett and Dr Jennifer Dodge he is convening the critical perspectives on the Voluntary Sector stream at the Critical Management Studies conference. He has set up and coordinates the list-serve CriticalVCS.

Daniel has presented at a number of international conferences and also to practitioner audiences, including part of the Business Leaders series with the CIPD (held in the British Medical Association HQ, London). He is keen to work with a range of academics and practitioners interested in new ways of organizing.


Journal Articles:
King, D., (2016) Becoming business-like through governing the non-profit professional, Nonprofit Voluntary Sector Quarterly

Reedy, P, King, D, and Coupland, C., (2016) Organizing for individuation: alternative organizing, politics and new identities, Organization Studies, 37(11): 1553–1573

King, D. and Learmonth, M., (2015). Can critical management studies ever be ‘practical’? A case study in engaged scholarship. Human Relations, 68 (3) 353-375

King, D., (2015)., The possibilities and perils of critical performativity: learning from four case studies. Scandinavian Journal of Management. 31 (2) 255-265,

Bell, E. and King, D. (2010) The Elephant in the Room: Critical Management Studies Conferences as a Site of Body Pedagogics, Management Learning, 41(4): 429-442

(2016) King, D and Lawley, S. Organisational Behaviour, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2nd Edition

Conference Papers:

Reedy, P. and King, D., 2016. Academic activism, radical ethnography and the critical scholar. In: 32nd EGOS Colloquium: Organizing in the Shadow of Power, Naples, Italy, July 7–9 2016.

Bell, E., and King, D., (2016) Unmasking the Unconference: Alternative Methods of Meeting Organization as an Organizational Learning Encounter, Knowledge Organisational Learning, Knowledge and Capabilities Conference, St Andrews

Schwabenland, C., and King, D., (2015) Researchers and Practitioners: Colleagues or Strangers?, Critical Management Studies, Leicester

King, D., and Learmonth, M., (2014). Doing management critically: an experiment in critically engaged scholarship. 74th Academy of Management Annual Meeting 2014, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

See all of Daniel King's publications...

Press expertise

Daniel can offer press comment on charities and voluntary organisations; charity management and organisational issues; ethical and social implications of management and organisations; and alternative ways of organizing. He has appeared on BBC radio and written pieces for the Daily Telegraph.